Sunday, August 26, 2007

Fernandez Era Begins in Beantown

The Boston Bruins have one of the more unique goaltending situations in the league. The Bruins traded for Manny Fernandez from Minnesota, who decided to go with Nicklas Backstrom full time, in exchange for prospect Petr Kalus and a Fourth-Round draft pick. He should be the team's starter come opening day, although his wonky knee is a bit of a concern. You can't argue with his numbers, although some people say that playing for the defensive-minded Wild may have skewed them. He has a career GAA of 2.47 and a .913 Save %. I believe that he will strive in Boston, and he will provide the Bruins with solid netminding for the next couple of years. The backup this year will be the wild Tim Thomas. He burst onto the scene in 05-06 and earned a starting job in 06-07, but it was quickly proven that he could not handle the load of an entire NHL season. He is still a very good option for Boston as a backup, and in case of another injury to Fernandez, they can feel comfortable with him back there.

Jordan Sigalet is a name Bruins fans have probably seen in their system for the past few years. He has played for Providence the last 2 seasons, and even got a brief call up to the show in 05-06. At 26-years-old he doesn't have much left in terms of potential, and he will probably be a mainstay in Providence for the rest of his career. They have an American goalie by the name of Mike Brown who played mainly in the ECHL last season, but has been called up to Providence on a few occasions. He is still young and may be a welcome surprise for the Bruins farm system.

The big name that everyone keeps hearing about is young Tuukka Rask. He was traded to Boston from Toronto in the now-infamous Raycroft deal. He keeps putting up great numbers for Ilves Tampere in the SM-Liiga, and he will be making his way to Boston very shortly. He is now 20-years-old and has completed his mandatory army duty for Finland (to the best of my knowledge) and he will surely be playing for Boston by 08-09. He has everything you would want in a goalie. Quick, agile, and strong, with great vision. He will need to add some muscle once he comes over to North America, he is a slim 165 right now, but that should be accomplished easily. Tuukka Rask will be a star very soon in Boston, and Fernandez should be able to hold the fort until he arrives.


Avsfan19 said...

Count me in as one of the people not sold on Fernandez behind a system that isn't coached by Lemaire. Though with Thomas behind him they should make a passable tandem.