Rask to be evaluated
NEW YORK — There is one certainty about Tuukka Rask. He will not be in uniform for Tuesday’s game against Toronto.
“He’s banged up to the point where he’s certainly not going to meet us on this road trip,” said coach Claude Julien before today’s 4-3 loss.
Beyond that, it remains to be seen how much time Rask will miss. The Bruins are expected to have more clarity on Rask’s situation on Monday following a complete evaluation on the 24-year-old goalie.
Rask was injured in the second period of Saturday’s 3-2 loss to the Islanders. Rask left the TD Garden ice with help from Joe Corvo and Greg Zanon, placing no pressure on his left leg. Rask departed the Garden on crutches. Rask underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee during the offseason.
Rask’s injury took place at an unfortunate time. While the Bruins always projected Tim Thomas to carry the load in the playoffs, they planned to spell the 37-year-old during the stretch run. The Bruins have 18 regular-season games remaining.
The Bruins could have recalled Anton Khudobin from Providence to take some of Thomas’s starts. But Khudobin is sidelined because of a wrist injury. Had Rask been hurt prior to last Monday, the Bruins could have traded for a veteran goalie.
Now, they have little choice but to ride Thomas. Michael Hutchinson was recalled on Saturday. But Hutchinson has yet to establish himself as an AHL goalie.
MacDermid makes NHL debut
With a father who appeared in 690 career NHL games, Lane MacDermid had the right person to ask regarding any advice for his big-league debut.
“Just don’t put too much pressure on yourself,” MacDermid, before the game, said of the words father Paul offered regarding the debut. “Just play your game, really enjoy it, and take it all in.”
Paul MacDermid, the former Whaler, attended the game with his wife to watch their son play in his first NHL game. With Daniel Paille unavailable, Lane MacDermid got the call on Saturday afternoon from assistant general manager Don Sweeney that he’d be joining the team. MacDermid had just woken up from his pregame nap when Sweeney delivered the news.
“I didn’t know why he was calling,” MacDermid said. “But it was a pretty nice surprise when he told me.”
MacDermid wore No. 64 while skating alongside Gregory Campbell and Shawn Thornton. MacDermid is a hard-nosed bottom-six wing who doesn’t mind scrapping. MacDermid showed why on his first shift. MacDermid squared off against Mike Rupp, one of the league’s tougher scrappers. Rupp landed some heavy bombs and knocked off MacDermid’s helmet. But MacDermid hung in amid the punches and recorded the takedown.
“I was hoping he was going to just play,” Julien said. “I didn’t think Ruppy would go after a young guy. But he started whacking him and slashing him. The kid stood up for himself. He did a great job. I think he handled himself well. For his first game, he did some good things out there. Not only that fight. He was not hesitant. He was making good decisions, good line changes, things that are very important in this league.”
MacDermid skated eight shifts for 5:26 of ice time. MacDermid, the team’s fourth-round pick in 2009, is a third-year pro. In 57 games with Providence, MacDermid had scored four goals and 10 assists while logging 106 penalty minutes.
This year, MacDermid was one of the final cuts in camp. MacDermid participated in the club’s teambuilding exercise in Great Diamond Island, Maine. MacDermid had chemistry with Campbell and Thornton.
Management and the coaching staff will be monitoring MacDermid closely. Paille, Campbell, and Thornton are scheduled to become unrestricted free agents on July 1. If any or all go elsewhere, MacDermid would be a candidate to be an NHL fourth-liner in 2012-13. MacDermid will be coming out of his entry-level contract at year’s end.
There were three fights in the first period: MacDermid vs. Rupp, Milan Lucic vs. Brandon Prust, and Gregory Campbell vs. Stu Bickel. Lucic scored the most decisive win of the three fights. Lucic cuffed Prust with a jarring left hook in front of the Boston bench to cap their scrap. It was a mutual fight off a draw, two seconds after Benoit Pouliot’s goal.
“I have a lot of respect for Prust,” Lucic said. “He’s a gamer. He’s a guy who’s going to stick up for himself and his teammates no matter what. It just seemed like the right time of the game. We were both battling for space in the faceoff circle and ended up in a fight.”
It was the second time Lucic and Prust have tangled. They fought for the first time last October, with Prust getting the better of Lucic.
Ference remains out
Andrew Ference (lower body) missed his second straight game. Ference is not expected to play against Toronto on Tuesday… Rangers captain Ryan Callahan (foot) sat out for the third straight game. Callahan has 25 goals, second-most on the team behind Marian Gaborik (31)… The Bruins were 0 for 3 on the power play. They made some tweaks after the first power play. Pouliot came off one unit. Brian Rolston, who had been on the point, shifted to replace Pouliot. Johnny Boychuk manned the point alongside Zdeno Chara… Michael Del Zotto returned to the Rangers lineup. Del Zotto sat out one game because of a hip injury… Mike Mottau was a healthy scratch for the third straight game… Referees Kelly Sutherland and Greg Kimmerly called an end to the first with 2:53 remaining in the first because of a cracked pane of glass behind the Rangers net.