One full year later and we’re still doing this? I’m going to lose my mind if I hear/see/even suspect someone of blaming Tuukka for losing game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals last year. The “blame the goalie it’s all his fault” crowd is so God damn annoying and quite frankly lazy as hell when it comes to analyzing hockey games. Tuukka Rask had an amazing post season in 2019 and without him, the Bruins don’t sniff the Cup final, let alone make it to game 7.
The two first period goals are the ones I hear fans (and radio hosts on a certain FM channel from the hours 2-6 ET) bitch about most when they talk about that game. We’re really going to blame Tuukka for a high slot tip in and a horrific change by Marchand with 11 seconds left in his own zone? Let’s be better.
If you’re looking to play the blame game, start with the offense. Last I checked scoring one goal in garbage time in a winner take all game is not in the recipe to succeed. If you go back and watch that 1st period and tell me you blame Tuukka and not the offense, I think it’s time for new glasses. The Bruins had 22 shots in the 1st and NINE SCORING CHANCES and still had a 0 on the board heading into the second. That’s inexcusable.
If you’re still convinced it was Tuukka’s fault, I’m not sure you can be helped. Did Binnington outplay him in game 7? No doubt about it. But if you’re in that spot and you need a superhuman effort by your goalie just to be in the game at all, then you have plenty of other issues. Unfortunately for Tuukka, he’s in a town that never forgets and never forgives. He’ll never shake 2010, he’ll never shake the illness that kept him out of games in 2016, and he won’t shake 2019 either. He could win the next 3 Stanley Cups and people will still respond “ya but we could have 2 more if he didn’t blow game 6 to the Blackhawks and game 7 to the Blues”, as if he was the only guy out on the ice for those games.