Don't Let His Name Fool You...He Is One To Fear

Dan CallagyContributor IFebruary 1, 2009

Tuukka Rask (pronounced Tu-ka).

Yes that is a real name, and yes he is human.

The 6'3" inch, 170 pound Finalnd-ite (he's from Finland), is now the future of the Boston Bruins. He was called up from the Providence Bruins on Thursday, and was told on Friday he would start Saturday (January 31st) when the Bruins host the New York Rangers.

The Bruins looked tired later on in the game but they kept engines moving as they eventually prevailed with a 1-0 win. Marc Savard scored the lone goal, his 19th. But the story of the game was, Tuukka Rask.

Rask was born in Finland in 1987, making him only 21 years old. He was drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2005 with the 21st pick in the first round. He was later traded from Toronto to the Bruins for, then star, Andrew Raycroft. He quickly became the starting goaltender for the Providence Bruins (AHL team of Bruins).

Because of his young age, they didn't want to call him up just yet in 2006. They let him adapt to Providence, then in 2007 made his NHL debut against the Toronto Maple Leafs on November 20th. He won that game, letting up two goals. He then returned back down to Providence for the remainder of the season.

In the 2008-09 season, he made two more starts before the one against the Rangers on the 31st. In his other two he one won and lost one, and only allowed 2 goals, but never started in any of those games.

On Saturday, January 31st, Tuukka made his first NHL start. Rask was called up because Manny Fernandez got hurt, and Tim Thomas needed a break.

The Bruins-Rangers game was a battle the whole way. Marc Savard scored the first goal at 19:37 in the second, and that was the lone goal of the game. Tuukka made 35 saves (on 35 shots) and made a few acrobatic saves. He looked alert and focused on the ice, and was "nervous at first but, became more confident as the game went on".

Tuukka looks like he is the future of the Bruins, and will make bug contributions this year.