Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: tim thomas
from Harvey Fialkov of the SunSentinel,
Thomas was the backup to starting U.S. Olympic goalie Ryan Miller in 2010 when America reached the gold-medal game only to lose 3-2 in overtime to Canada. Although Thomas only played briefly against Finland, he said Monday that returning to the Olympics in Sochi, Russia this February was one of the main reasons he decided to end his one-year hiatus.
"Absolutely, absolutely,'' Thomas said emphatically when asked about his Olympics hopes. "Yeah, it's one of the major factors. I only got to play [part of one period] against Finland. But the whole experience was awesome. It doesn't matter if you're playing or not in the Olympics you want to be a part of it, and I'd love to be a part of it again.''
Predators General Manager David Piole, who's also the GM of the U.S. Naional team, told the Sun Sentinel last month in Nashville that although Thomas wasn't invited to the tryouts last summer because he was still retired, he's in the picture.
"We have a lot of good options,'' Poile said. "We didn't know Timmy's situation then but he's in the program and if he's one of the best three goalies, he's going to Sochi.''
Miller is 4-11 and in the midst of a dreadful season in Buffalo, and other potential U.S. goalies such as Ottawa's Craig Anderson (5-6-2 with a 3.26 goals-against-average) and Detroit's Jimmy Howard (5-5-6 with a 2.68 GAA) are struggling.
Per NHL.com's Alain Poupart, Tim Thomas seems to be suffering from Dominik Hasek syndrome (goalie returns after semi-retirement, deals with chronic injuries as he gets back into game shape):
Florida Panthers goalie Tim Thomas left Tuesday's game against the Chicago Blackhawks with an apparent lower-body injury and did not return.
Thomas left the ice with 2:59 remaining in the third period and the score tied 2-2. He was replaced by Jacob Markstrom, who was beaten twice in the shootout as the Blackhawks won 3-2.
Thomas went down to make a save and lay on his stomach in obvious discomfort. After the next whistle, he skated to the Florida bench, moved his leg to test it and showed obvious pain, at which time Markstrom replaced him.
Thomas was making his third start after missing four games with a groin injury he sustained during a 2-1 loss against the Philadelphia Flyers on Oct. 8. Florida coach Kevin Dineen said after the game he had no update on Thomas' condition but that the injury Thomas sustained on Tuesday was not the same as the one he suffered in Philadelphia.
Here's NHL.com's video of the injury:
The Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch suggests that the Florida Panthers' new owners plan on shaking up the team, with just about everyone who's not a top prospect up for grabs:
Three weeks into the season — and less than a month since Vincent Viola and Douglas Cifu took over the franchise — sources say the Panthers are prepared to move any of their veteran players.
Forwards Tomas Fleischmann, Kris Versteeg, Scottie Upshall, Shawn Matthias, Brad Boyes and Marcel Goc are among those available along with Tom Gilbert and Dmitry Kulikov, just to name a few.
After making the playoffs two years ago, the Panthers haven’t gotten off to the kind of start anybody expected, especially after signing veteran goalie Tim Thomas.
While Viola and Cifu are willing to commit cash to the organization, the belief is they don’t want to throw good money after bad. The only thing GM Dale Tallon doesn’t want to do is trade any of the club’s good young prospects.
Continued with many more rumors...
As Paul noted, Tim Thomas appeared to tweak his groin or some othe part of his "lower body" in the Florida Panthers' 2-1 loss to Philly on Tuesday, and while I was preparing to have my beard trimmed for the first time in six years, Pro Hockey Talk's Ryan Dadoun notes that Niklas Backstrom got dinged in the Wild's 3-2 loss to Nashville...
[T]he Minnesota Wild are reporting that netminder Niklas Backstrom is done for the night due to a similar problem.
Backstrom lasted just 11:14 minutes against the Nashville Predators and surrendered two goals on five shots. He sustained the injury when Nashville forward Eric Nystrom crashed into him and seemed to accidentally jam Backstrom’s leg against the post.
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Tags: brad+stuart, eric+nystrom, erik+gudbranson, florida+panthers, minnesota+wild, nashville+predators, new+york+rangers, niklas+backstrom, philadelphia+flyers, rick+nash, san+jose+sharks, scott+hartnell, tim+thomas
The Panthers are saying lower-body injury and will not return. Looks like it is a groin in this video.
It is a goal replay, so you will have to keep your eye on Thomas.
ESPN's Scott Burnside's relieving Pierre LeBrun in the "rumblings" department today, offering "ramblings" instead. Among them:
Like most people, we’re fascinated to see how the Daniel Alfredsson experiment turns out in Detroit. But the one thing that we still can’t get over is that the NHL decided not to act on Alfredsson’s blunt acknowledgement that his previous contract with the Ottawa Senators was, in fact, a blatant attempt to circumvent the salary cap under the previous collective bargaining agreement. Alfredsson told reporters before training camp that when the four-year deal was signed neither side expected Alfredsson would play in the contract’s final year -- worth only $1 million in real money even though the cap hit was $4.875 million annually. It was exactly that kind of wink, wink, nudge, nudge deal that the league had been warning teams about for years -- Alfredsson made $7 million in each of the first two years of the pact -- and which ultimately cost the New Jersey Devils mightily in their first attempt at a contract for the erstwhile Ilya Kovalchuk. The so-called cheat deals were, in theory, eliminated by new parameters put on contracts in the new collective bargaining agreement and the league’s position is that they are going to look forward instead of back. Good news for the Senators, but maybe in the spirit of CBA détente, the league should forgive the Devils the first round draft pick they must forfeit next spring for having done no worse than what Alfredsson admitted the Senators did in his case.
I'm curious as to why the Flames aren't being dinged for allowing Miikka Kiprusoff to retire early, too, but that's just me...
The Toronto Sun's Steve Simmons offers a scattershot slate of mostly Maple Leafs-related observations this morning, and the train of thought in this particular paragraph struck me as most intriguing:
Would love to know why Sergei Makarov, who was a top-10 player in the world from 1979-1989 is still not in the Hockey Hall of Fame....
Ran into Paul Coffey, Darryl Sittler, Marcel Dionne and a few more all-time greats at the Road Hockey To Conquer Cancer event at Ontario Place. If there’s a better charity event than this one, I haven’t seen it ...
Maybe it’s personal, but it makes me just a little uncomfortable to see Sheldon Keefe honoured this coming week for his time coaching in Pembroke. Maybe I’m too old to forget and or maybe I just know too much...
The best supporting actors in [Paul] Ranger’s return to the NHL: David Branch and Dallas Eakins...
If I was Dale Tallon, I would have given Tim Thomas the $3.75 million the Florida Panthers gave him but if I was paying him that much, I wouldn’t have given him a no-trade contract.
SUNRISE, Fla. – Florida Panthers Executive VP/General Manager Dale Tallon announced today that the club has agreed to terms with G Tim Thomas on a one-year contract.
“Tim is a proven winner who we are pleased to have signed,” said Tallon. “He is a fierce competitor who brings to our club a wealth of experience including a Stanley Cup Championship, two Vezina trophies and a Conn Smythe. He is a hardworking, driven and dedicated individual who will help our club achieve future success.”
TSN's Bob McKenzie, Darren Dreger and Pierre LeBrun discussed David Clarkson's suspension, Paul Bissonnette's appealing of his suspension, the probability of the NHL and NHLPA adopting hybrid icing and even expansion to Seattle in an "Insider Trading" segment, but pre-season hockey games aren't exactly covered with the intense scrutiny of regular-season games, so the most intriguing part of their segment involves, well, assessing which players have played well and which ones have played poorly during the part of the season that theoretically doesn't count:
from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,
Now that Thomas is in Florida, his inimitable game will be back on display. Thomas’s body is recharged after a year off. His mental approach will be even sharper. Thomas is motivated to show everybody he’s still one of the game’s best goalies. One of Thomas’s goals will be to make the US Olympic team. Thomas’s competitors include Jonathan Quick, Jimmy Howard, Ryan Miller, Craig Anderson, and Cory Schneider.
In Boston, the anger is gone. Rask was ready to replace Thomas as the starter. Anton Khudobin was a dependable backup. The Bruins were able to move Thomas’s salary to the Islanders, which freed up enough cash to land Jaromir Jagr from Dallas. Chad Johnson is now wearing Thomas’s No. 30.
Thomas’s ties to New England run deep. He considered Lynnfield home before he decamped to Colorado Springs. Thomas made friends in Providence. He played at the University of Vermont for four years. Thomas’s summer hockey camps have included sessions in Falmouth, Maine.
On Oct. 17, the Bruins will visit Florida. On Nov. 7, the Panthers will play at TD Garden. You can bet Thomas will be in goal for those games. He’ll do big things on both nights, and the league will be better for it.
more on Thomas and additional hockey notes...
Tim Thomas after his first practice today with the Florida Panthers.
If you prefer reading what Thomas had to say, head to TSN.
McKenzie's earlier tweet says it will be a PTO for Thomas.
added 2:24pm, Panthers confirm Thomas has signed a PTO, will practice tomorrow.
from Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated,
It’s not just a matter of whether Thomas can still play goal, although that’s a legitimate question for a 39-year-old who hasn’t faced an NHL shot since Apr. 25, 2012. Practicing yoga in between chopping wood probably kept him in shape, but that’s not the same as hockey shape. And it’s unreasonable to expect a team to assume the risk of a contract without seeing him in game action.
But the bigger issue for Thomas is fit. As in, finding a team that needs a goalie, can afford him financially, and provides a setting where he can be happy.
That team might not exist.
There was talk initially about the Flyers being interested because hey, they’re interested in everybody who has his own set of pads and stop a puck or two, but that deal is not happening. Philly is set between the pipes with free agent signee Ray Emery and Steve Mason, and the Flyers probably don’t have enough under the cap now to buy a Tim Thomas hockey card, let alone the real thing.
The Islanders were also said to be in the mix, but they could have tolled his contract and kept him if they were seriously interested. They’ve since re-signed Evgeni Nabokov and are committed to giving Kevin Poulin a chance to prove that he’s ready to assume a larger role. A sketchy combo to be sure, but the Isles are committed for now.
The opportunities vary from slim to none with the other playoff contenders. So would Thomas be willing to suit up for an also-ran?
from Steve Silverman of CBS New York,
The Islanders knew that Thomas wasn’t going to play in 2013, and if they though he would play in 2013-14, they could have tolled his contract.
They didn’t do that. If they had, Thomas probably would have had no inclination to play again. But he told his agent that he is interested in “pursuing” his career once again. He would be a solid fit for a number of teams – including the hated Flyers — but he would be perfect for the Islanders....
Few people believe in the Islanders. They got hot in the second half of the season and they made the playoffs. Can they sustain their run next year and go further than the first round?
The answer is a resounding NO if they don’t have a goaltender.
In addition to tossing DiPietro aside, starting goalie Evgeni Nabokov is a free agent. Let him go.
The Islanders need a real goalie. They need to sign Thomas and help him lead an Islanders’ resurgence.
So maybe his only option is Philadelphia. And since Homer refuses to move any of his young prospects to upgrade the position, maybe Thomas is the only option for the Flyers.
It’s crazy to think these two could wind up together.
So crazy, it just might work.
-Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated on the possibility of Tim Thomas signing with the Flyers. More on this from Muir.
Bill Zito is a player agent...
from Elliotte Friedman of CBC,
One year ago, Tim Thomas was THE story. The goalie who didn’t grab an NHL stranglehold until he was 32, an opportunity he initially refused, not believing the Bruins would provide a fair chance.
But, there he was, in the middle of Boston’s Stanley Cup celebration, the backbone of a champion. The Vezina Trophy winner, MVP of the playoffs, a terrific rags-to-riches success, one of the best interviews in the league.
Now? Well, is anyone really certain what we’re dealing with?
There’s an understanding among players that goalies are different. But that adjective doesn’t do Thomas justice, especially by NHL standards. Most players try to fit in. He has no interest in doing so, and the Bruins did an excellent job of preventing most of us from realizing that. If they didn’t have a White House visit on the calendar, would we have any clue?
continued including 30 Thoughts…
From the earliest age I can remember, I’ve wanted to be a hockey player. I’ve been blessed in my life to not only be able to live that dream, but to achieve more than I ever thought possible.
The singleminded focus that is necessary to accomplish a dream of this magnitude entails (by necessity) sacrifice in other areas and relationships in life.
At the age of 38, I believe it is time to put my time and energies into those areas and relationships that I have neglected. That is why at this time I feel the most important thing I can do in my life is to reconnect with the three F’s.
Friends, Family, and Faith.
This is what I plan on doing over the course of the next year. ...
What does this portend for the future?
We’ll see….God’s will be done.
from Douglas Flynn of NESN,
Asked about how he sees the club’s goaltending situation playing out next season at Friday’s breakup day at the Garden, Chiarelli indicated he was in no rush to break up a tandem that has been so solid over the last three seasons.
“I view it pretty much the same way I saw it going into the last summer, the biggest difference being that Tuukka obviously didn’t play towards the end because of his injury,” Chiarelli said, before quickly adding, “for me there’s no uncertainty there with regard to him being back and healthy.
“I know I’ve seen speculation about moving a goalie and all that stuff, but certainly I’m not inclined to do that,” Chiarelli continued. “Tim didn’t have statistically the year he had before but I thought he had a very good year. We have, if not the best, one of the top two or three goalie tandems in the league.”
Rask is coming off a strained groin and abdomen that sidelined him for the final five weeks of the regular season and start of the playoffs, but he returned to dress as Thomas’ backup in the final two games against Washington. On Friday, Rask declared himself “100 percent” and was not worried about any future issues with the injury.
from Joe Haggerty of CSNNE,
Tim Thomas noticeably used the pronoun “they”—not “we”—when discussing his Bruins teammates at multiple points after Boston’s Game 7 loss to the Washington Capitals.
The 38-year-old goaltender, who is clearly intent on being viewed as an individual first and foremost, was good but not spectacular in his team’s 2-1 loss to the Capitals. A tipped puck beat him for the first goal, then Mike Knuble barreled over him in overtime before Joel Ward scored the dagger.
Thomas now enters an offseason filled with the unknown.
He’s entering the final year of his contract, and his no-trade clause expires this offseason. Plus, the Bruins will likely have 25-year-old Tuukka Rask (a restricted free agent) waiting in the wings.
Thomas showed some signs last night that he may be anticipating a trade.
Thomas robs Marcus Johansson.
Tim Thomas isn’t going anywhere.
Boston Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli shot down any trade rumours on Monday, saying there were no plans to move his star goaltender.
“Not trading him,” Chiarelli said in an e-mail to TSN Hockey Insider Pierre LeBrun. “I have not talked to anyone and I don’t plan to.”...
One rumour that surfaced during the All-Star break had Thomas being sent to Chicago in exchange for forward Viktor Stalberg.
(Tim) Thomas’s decision to skip a team visit to the White House because he buys the garbage pumped out by Glenn Beck and his ilk was bad enough. But then, having pulled a highly public stunt to call attention to his whacko politics, Thomas blamed the media for paying attention.
Look, if this cretin wants to stand outside the White House and spew his drivel, that’s free speech. But standing up the president? All that does is show that Thomas has the class of a swamp-rat.
What’s worse, you know Thomas would not have done this with the liberal Democrat Bill Clinton in the White House. Truth is, he felt free to dis Barack Obama, because Obama is black.
-Jack Todd of the Montreal Gazette, where you can read a bit more on this plus other hockey topics…
from Bruce Arthur of the National Post,
Tim Thomas waded through the crowd and sat in the shaky folding director’s chair behind the podium, in a room swimming with fellow NHL all-stars and media, and managed an easy smile. “I can’t believe this chair held Z,” he said, referring to his looming teammate, Zdeno Chara. He gave a little laugh.
That was pretty much the end of the fun, even in this most frivolous of weekends. As the rest of the available NHL constellation sat and talked with ease, the usually affable Thomas chose his words with great care, pausing to stare into the middle distance, and tried to hole himself up in the edifice he had created this week by skipping Boston’s Stanley Cup visit to the White House and releasing a libertarian political message on his Facebook page. Now, Thomas clearly wants the whole thing to go away.
“I think it should. I think it should,” Thomas said. “Why? Because it’s all media-driven right now. It has been from the start. And everything that I said and did was as an individual, not as a representative of the Boston Bruins. It … all it has to do is with me. But it’s separate from hockey. That’s my personal life. Those are my personal views. Those are my personal beliefs. It has nothing to do with hockey. It has nothing to do with this All-Star Game. And it has nothing to do with the Boston Bruins.”
That is an entanglement that seems impossible to break. It was, after all, a team event, and as Thomas has refused to expand on or defend his beliefs in detail — “I followed my conscience,” he said Thursday night after the NHL all-star draft — his teammates and coach and general manager have been asked to explain his actions, and how they might affect the team. As David Shoalts of The Globe and Mail asked Chara before the draft, “Zdeno, you said you won’t be picking all right-wingers. Does this mean you won’t be picking Tim Thomas?” As one Bruins team source told The Boston Globe’s Fluto Shinzawa, “[Expletive] selfish [expletive].”
from Joe Haggerty of CSNNE,
The question was never whether Thomas HAD the right to skip the White House visit, but SHOULD he simply have stifled his personal interests for the betterment of a team celebrating their win one last time. Many will applaud the B’s goaltender for damning the torpedoes and simply doing what he felt was right in his world view. That is the kind of stand-alone bravery that can foster change in times when it’s needed.
But here’s one suggestion: why not announce Thomas’ intentions prior to the visit in order to defuse the situation and take the heat out of it on Monday afternoon. Thomas is wonderful at stopping pucks in tense situations and he’s one of the most humble athletes you’ll ever come across.
But he’s not a brilliant PR strategist and there seems to have been no notion of getting out ahead of the train wreck that steamed into the East Wing of the White House Monday afternoon.
from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,
Shabby. Immature. Unprofessional. Self-centered. Bush league. Need I go on? All that and more applies to what Thomas did, on a day when Cup teammates Mark Recchi (now retired), Shane Hnidy (a radio guy these days in Winnipeg), and Tomas Kaberle (a member of some Original Six team in Canada), all gladly joined the red-white-blue-black-and-gold hugfest at the White House.
Thomas needed to be there in solidarity, and celebration, with his team. It was the same government yesterday, and will be today, that protected his country, his security, his family, and his right to make $5 million a year, all last season. In his absence, he stole his teammates’ spotlight. Win as a team. Lose as a team. And when asked to stand up and take a bow, then stand up there and suffer if need be, even if you don’t like the setting, the host, or any of the political trappings and tenets that come with it.
via Fluto Shinzawa of the Bruins Blog at the Boston Globe,
Tim Thomas, one of two Americans on the roster, chose not to attend today’s ceremony at the White House, according to GM Peter Chiarelli.
“We’re like a family. We have our issues,” Chiarelli answered when asked if Thomas’s decision overshadowed the visit. “You deal with them, move on, and try and support everyone. It may or may not. If it does, I hope it doesn’t. The guys seemed to enjoy it. I enjoyed it.”
All other players were in attendance. Chiarelli said attendance today was not mandatory. Steven Kampfer is the other American player.
“I can require someone to attend a team event. If they don’t, I can suspend him,” Chiarelli said. “I’m not suspending Tim. Whatever his position is, it isn’t reflective of the Boston Bruins nor my own. But I’m not suspending him.”
added 6:15pm, Tim Thomas releases a statement via Facebook, read it below…
from Sean Gregory of Time,
As if leading the Bruins to their first Cup in 39 years wasn’t surreal enough, at the NHL awards show in Las Vegas a few days after Boston’s victory, some skinny guy with long hair approached Thomas on the red carpet. “He was like, ‘hey, congratulations,” says Thomas, who was MVP of last season’s playoffs. ‘I followed your career the whole way, this and that.’” I was like, ‘thanks.’ He was like, ‘you don’t remember me, do you?’” I’m like, ‘no.’” He goes, ‘I lived on your floor freshman year, at the University of Vermont, two doors town from you.’” I was like, ‘Tex?’ And I never put two and two together that this guy was Dierks Bentley, the country singer. It was pretty cool.’”
While Thomas is reveling in his new fame, he’s not immune to the shocks hitting hockey.
“The Midwest work ethic is heavy in this state. I was taught if you want something bad enough and you’re willing toward for it, you can get it. It’s kind of the American dream, so to speak, which I think a lot of people, to be honest, have given up on.
“I’m proof you still can (do it). If there’s anything that the younger generation that’s watching here today or is part of this can take out of it, it’s that it’s up to you. You can do nearly whatever you want if you’re willing to work hard enough and long enough at it.”
-Tim Thomas of the Boston Bruins during his Cup Day in the Flint, MI area. More from Thomas by Brendan Savage of the Flint Journal at Mlive.
Determining a first overall pick in this year’s fantasy hockey drafts is anything but easy, but we probably know this much: the first overall pick won’t be a goalie. Yet a goalie is an important investment to fantasy hockey teams, since only two goalies can be responsible for four out of a team’s ten stat categories in many fantasy hockey leagues. The need for solid goaltending explains why many starting goalies can fly off the board early in fantasy hockey drafts.
Filed in: Fantasy Hockey and Gaming, thegoods13, | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: carey+price, cory+schneider, fantasy+hockey, goalies, henrik+lundqvist, ilya+bryzgalov, jose+theodore, martin+brodeur, nikolai+khabibulin, pekka+rinne, roberto+luongo, ryan+miller, sergei+bobrovsky, steve+mason, tim+thomas, tomas+vokoun, tuukka+rask
Is Sidney Crosby still the number one pick in fantasy leagues?
Mere hours after my posting suggesting that Crosby should be the first overall pick, Josh Rimer’s tweet about Crosby’s unlikeliness to be in the Penguins’ lineup to start the season was making the rounds.
Filed in: Fantasy Hockey and Gaming, thegoods13, | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: alex+ovechkin, corey+perry, daniel+sedin, fantasy+hockey, henrik+sedin, josh+rimer, martin+brodeur, ray+shero, sidney+crosby, steven+stamkos, tim+thomas
As you’ll likely figure out over time from reading “Cluster Pucks” - I tend to be a bit partial to goaltenders. This undoubtedly stems from the fact that I myself spend the majority of my young hockey career in between the pipes. It would be the same position I would continue to play up to this very day, if you consider the EA Sports NHL series of video games as “playing” and their online player league, the EA Sports Hockey League, an actual “league”. Both of which I do, having had plenty of firsthand experience at very high levels of play that exist in this “game”. I think many of you would be surprised at the level of seriousness that many players (such as myself) take with a mere video game.
from Brian Cazeneuve of Sports Illustrated,
In the front of the lead duck boat, Tim Thomas Sr. recalled the boy who would ask his father to toss him footballs near the backyard bushes outside their Flint, Mich., home so he’d have to dive into them to make a catch. “It was more of a challenge that way,” the junior Thomas says. He would even attempt to make diving catches in the street until the day he collided with a slow-moving car. Yes, thanks, just a scrape. Oh, and how is your Buick?
In 1980 a five-year-old Thomas watched goaltender Jim Craig play beyond his means to lead Team USA to its Miracle on Ice victory over the Soviet Union and, with a win over Finland two days later, the Olympic gold medal. “From then on,” says Thomas, “I wanted to be a goalie.” Within a few years Tim Sr. and his wife, Kathy, had pawned their wedding rings for $300 so they could send Tim to a peewee tournament. The father sold cars and, later, local produce, and at 16 the son went door-to-door peddling bushels of apples. “He was determined to be the best at that too,” says Tim Sr., 57. “Sometimes if people wouldn’t answer the door, he’d peek around the back to go find them. He’d sell about five bushels and make $40, and he’d stay out until he made it.”
In his yearbook at Davison (Mich.) High, Thomas was dubbed Rip Van Winkle because he could sleep through classes yet still maintain an A average, frustrating teachers by having the right answer when they woke him up.
Tim Thomas takes a moment to say a few words to Boston Bruins fans at today’s Stanley Cup Parade.
Video below shows more scenes from the event:
Geez, a full two minutes for Tim Thomas, Zdeno Chara and Patrice Begeron to talk about winning the Cup.
Wonder how much time they would get if the NHL wasn’t on NBC?
Thomas’ first save of the night, a stop on a shot by Vancouver’s Chris Tanev 1:48 into Wednesday night’s game, was his 762nd of the playoffs, giving him the mark for the most saves by a goaltender in one playoff year. He broke a tie with Kirk McLean, who made 761 saves for Vancouver in 1994, the last time the Canucks went to the Final.
Thomas finished the night with 37 saves, giving him a total of 798 this spring.
The first shot Thomas stopped in the second period gave him another record—it was the 821st he faced this spring, moving him past McLean’s total in 1994. He finished the spring facing 849 shots, passing McLean’s total of 820.
Thomas also broke the Final record for saves, which had been held by Toronto’s Johnny Bower in 1964. Thomas’ 37 saves in Game 7 gave him 238, five more than Bower made in leading the Leafs to the Cup 47 years ago. He wound up facing 246 shots the seven games, third on the all-time list behind Bower (250) and McLean (247).
How can you
like this guy? (Vancouver fans: You, of course, are excused from answering.)
I was fortunate enough to chat with him briefly in Raleigh during All-Star Weekend earlier this season and caught him at the podium during the East Final but it seems like Tim Thomas has a gem or two lined up every time he gets behind a mic.
In Tuesday’s off-day presser, in discussing childhood driveway fantasies of Game 7 situations, Thomas relayed, “Well, I was Stevie Yzerman, which doesn’t make sense for a goalie, but…” Later, as a reporter began a question with, “Standing here today,” the Bruins’ netminder extraordinaire jumped in for a moment of levity, affably quipping, “You’re sitting and so am I.”
Stuff like that is, well, it’s just fun. Kinda like watching Thomas play the game.
As a hockey fan with no team of interest in the Cup Final, a Game 7 is all I - or anyone in my position - could ask for. I won’t be rooting but if Thomas is fortunate enough to raise the Cup this evening, he’s definitely one guy I’d be happy to raise a glass for and toast in his honor in turn.
Here’s the rest of yesterday’s presser:
In this business we all make mistakes. We all get off on tangents at times, and sometimes just to have fun. But this one isn’t doing the Canucks goalie any favours and it’s just plain wrong.
-Tony Gallagher of the Vancouver Province on the media who have written about the comments Roberto Luongo made regarding Tim Thomas. More on this…
Q. Tim, you and Ken Dryden are likely the only two goaltenders that graduated from college and gone this deep into the finals. Have you thought about that and what that’s meant to the college game and this run for you so far?
TIM THOMAS: Well, I didn’t realize that me and Dryden were the only two. You know, it’s an honor to be mentioned in the same sentence as Ken Dryden. He played at Cornell, the same league that I played college hockey at.
When I was in college, I remember looking at what he’d accomplished and his stats. Those were stats that I was gunning for to try and reach in college because he had a good college career. I read his book either when I was in college or I think the year after I was out of college, too, and gained some insight from that.
So I didn’t realize that was the case. I would like to hope that I can finish it off and get the Cup like he did.
Watch as Roberto Luongo discusses the goaltending style of Tim Thomas and then Kevin Weekes of the NHL Network gives his two cents worth.
from Steve MacFarlane of the Calgary Sun,
Tim Thomas is a throwback.
He’s a heart-on-his sleeve, all-or-nothing, fight-for-everything he gets goaltender who has stolen the spotlight in the Stanley Cup final.
He’s everything Canadians want to see representing the game they call their own.
But the Boston Bruins’ Thomas is also (gasp!) an American.
Say it isn’t so … a hockey hero inspiring a team in a championship series, who with his bushy ginger playoff beard looks like a lumberjack fresh out of an old-growth redwood forest in B.C., and he calls Flint, Michigan, home?
It just doesn’t seem right.
Q&A with Tim Thomas and Mark Recchi. Video (and transcript below):
TIM THOMAS: Don’t call us ‘old man,’ because we’ll both answer (laughter).
Q. What part of your anatomy are we supposed to kiss tonight?
MARK RECCHI: It is what it is. Like I said before, I care about what my teammates and coaching staff are thinking. People that have any question marks about it don’t know what it takes to win so…
Final score in case you missed the end of the game was 8-1.
One play can probably paint a picture on what kind of night it was for the Vancouver Canucks.
from Chuck Gormley of the Delco Times,
The Flyers should go after Thomas. Hard. But they should not sacrifice Carter, who is in the prime of his career with at least four or five productive seasons left in him. Thomas now has two years remaining in his contract and provides the perfect bridge to Sergei Bobrovsky, who at 22 could benefit from an entire season as a starter in the American Hockey League.
How can Holmgren make it happen?
First, the Bruins need to convince themselves they can win without Thomas. They have 24-year-old Tuukka Rask waiting for the opportunity, but Rask lost the starting job to Thomas early this season and never got it back.
NOTE: Milan Lucic, Mark Recchi and Patrice Bergeron videos added down below.
Transcripts and video from the Bruins. First, Tim Thomas on video:
Next, coach Claude Julien, transcription:
Q. Why was it Zdeno Chara and Andrew Ference to start in overtime?
COACH JULIEN: Because we don’t know who they’re going to put on. They got the last change. It’s a pretty normal thing.
Q. It’s two games in a row now where they were able to exert their will, take over in the third period. How alarming is that for you right now?
From Eric Duhatschek at the Globe & Mail:
Burrows took four penalties in the opener and coach Alain Vigneault suggested one - a goalie interference call on Tim Thomas - was largely unwarranted. The contact, in that case, did appear to be incidental and the Canucks have said that between games, they have contacted the NHL to get a clarification about why those calls are made, if Thomas is always leaving the crease to stop the puck. Thomas’s counterpart, Roberto Luongo, changed his style this season, to play deeper in the net, and Vigneault implied it had to do with avoiding incidental conduct.
According to Burrows, the answers were expected to come later Friday.
“At the same, I’ve got to be aware, around the net, to make sure I can’t bump the goalie. That’s his ice if he’s already there. I have to be smarter and make sure I don’t put my team down a man.”
Tim Thomas had a great game in goal tonight and did deserve a better outcome.
Watch as he discusses the game.
A ton of quotes from the Boston Bruins today, including Claude Julien, Patrice Bergeron, Mark Recchi, Tim Thomas, Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg.
BOSTON BRUINS HEAD COACH CLAUDE JULIEN:
On if they are done celebrating the Game 7 win…
Well I think one thing that we were done celebrating was the next day. That night was an opportunity for us to enjoy the moment and rightfully so but next day it was about getting our rest. And we started working on things yesterday and so it’s preparation here for the, for what we feel is obviously the biggest part of the season coming up. So it’s sunk in. I mean it sunk in that we’re there. It also sunk in that we’re not done. We realize that there’s a lot of work ahead of us, probably the hardest games to win as you know will be against a team that kind of dominated the league this year. And we know we’re capable of doing it. We certainly don’t feel like we’re a team that is not capable of winning games against this team and we’re going to have to go out there and prove it. And that’s the thing that we want to do, is prove that we’re as good a team as they are and that’s where the challenge lies.
On how big a factor Tim Thomas’s experience will be in the Stanley Cup Final…