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Bruins sign Rask — eight years, $56 million

Jul 10, 2013, 5:18 PM EDT

Tuukka Rask Getty Images

The Boston Bruins have signed goalie Tuukka Rask to an eight-year, $56 million contract, the club announced today.

The contract — which should come as no shock, given it was reportedly in the works last week — features a cap hit of $7 million. Only one other goalie in the NHL has a cap hit that high: Nashville’s Pekka Rinne (also $7 million).

In 2013, Rask went 19-10-5 with a .929 save percentage during the regular season. Then, in the playoffs, his .940 save percentage in 22 games was tops among all starters as the B’s made it all the way to the Stanley Cup Final.

Rask, 26, is coming off a one-year, $3.5 million deal that he signed last summer. The Bruins had wanted to lock up their young netminder for longer, but ultimately both sides kicked the can down the road a season.

For Rask, it turned out to be a good gamble to take the “prove it” contract.

  1. chazxcore - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:20 PM

    Good for Rask. I love his mask.

  2. hockeyflow33 - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:23 PM

    Giant mistake. Guy can’t close out games.

    Don’t get me wrong, he’s a really, really good goalie, he just doesn’t have the thing that makes you elite.

    • drewsylvania - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:31 PM

      Examples?

      • hockeyflow33 - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:39 PM

        Well the biggest ones are 2010 Flyers and 2013 SCF.

        The losses clearly weren’t all his fault but the elites find ways to win for their team. Guys like Brodeur, Roy, Hasek or even Thomas found ways to steal games when they had no business doing so and that’s what makes a truly elite goalie.
        Rask is a great goalie, he’s on par with Lundqvist, Luongo, etc but those goalies just can’t make that extra save, (which very few can anyways).

        I think he’ll be really good for the team over the course of the contract but he needs his team to play very well in front of him in order to win the Cup.

      • dropthepuckeh - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:28 PM

        It is an example of the market. Lundqvist will be cashing in soon too. I’m not hurt at all, I just think you are wrong.

      • apkyletexas - Jul 10, 2013 at 8:49 PM

        @drewsylvania – >”Examples?”

        ===================================

        Can’t think of any — but it’s coming back to me — just give me some time…

        Just give me — SEVENTEEN SECONDS.

      • pepper2011 - Jul 10, 2013 at 10:17 PM

        Why Rask is well worth it.

        First to take on the obvious. Game 6 against Chicago was not his fault. It was a desperate team that put one in and then attacked a shocked team. He is not to blame for game 6.*

        2010 against the Flyers: Begin, Hunwick, Satan, Whitfield, Sobotka, Stuart and Savard post concussion. This team should NEVER have been up 3-0. Rask outplayed Miller to get them there. They had Wideman who is terrible on top of the aforementioned. Recchi was old, Wheeler is terrible too, although for some reason people think he is good.

        He has had more than one good year. I know he only has 138 nhl games, but when you factor in his playoffs (173games) and the consistency between the two; it’s a pretty safe assumption on what you are going to get. A GAA around 2.10 and a save percentage
        near.930%
        Reg 2.15/.927%/138g
        Playoffs 2.14/.930%/35g

        He has proven he can handle Boston. The and the Bad. After 2010 he faced a ton of criticism. He lost the starting job back to Thomas and watched Thomas play his butt off and win a cup. The whole Thomas situation happened and now the Bruins turn back to him. He shows confidence by signing the one year deal (heading into this year) and he gets them back to the cup. Toronto lit him up a few games, but the Bruins hadn’t woke up yet and their D was playing terrible. He outplayed Lundqvist(who played very well) and he SHUT DOWN the Pens. The Bruins D and their system helped; don’t’ get me wrong, but he stole a couple games, and the he made the big save when he needed to. He is terrific positionally, so he’s not as flashy as Thomas, but statistically his numbers were virtually the same as Thomas’ the year they won the Cup.

        Winning in Boston, and especially losing in Boston are not easy things. He had handled them all incredibly well. Flawlessly. He handled the pressure of proving himself and the pressure of playing for contract.
        *He never threw anyone under the bus, not after the 2010 collapse and not after losing the cup. He allowed 2 goals in 14 periods against a healthy Penguins team. Unproven or lucky goalies don’t do that.

        I think most people would agree that the minimum he was going to get was 5.5m/5 years. I am ok with possibly overpaying for a guy who you know can handle playing in Boston.

        Rask is a top five goalie and deserved to be paid as such, and he is. you may disagree with his slotting, but when push comes to shove if it’d johnson or Svedberg the Bruins will be paying their goalies 7.6 – 8m next year.
        MTL 7.9M
        PIT 7M
        ANA 7.4M
        DAL 6.8-7.5M.

        Are they getting a great deal, nope. Are they in the right ball park, an emphatic YES.

      • hockeyflow33 - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:14 AM

        He’s not a bad goalie because he can’t steal games or series, very few goalies can. While the goale may not be his fault, ultimately he’s the guy in net and much like there are Briere’s on offense who seem to find a hidden level when it counts, Rask hasn’t shown he has that ability.

    • dropthepuckeh - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:06 PM

      “I think he’ll be really good for the team over the course of the contract but he needs his team to play very well in front of him in order to win the Cup.”

      Wow captain obvious, any other pearls of wisdom? I’m pretty sure you always need an elite goalie and a team playing well to win the Cup. That is why it is so hard.

      I don’t blame Rask for either of the examples you gave, it was the team playing in front of him. In fact, I think Rask did steal games in the 2013 playoffs and the Bruins wouldn’t have even made it as far as they did if he hadn’t been elite.

      Obviously time will tell but Rask was eligible for arbitration and good, proven, young goalies demand this kind of money. I mean if Pekka Rinne makes that much how could you justify paying Rask less??

      • hockeyflow33 - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:19 PM

        I’m not sure citing one team’s desire to overspend as a great way to dictate your cap.

        I don’t understand why people get so hurt when you say Rask isn’t the best ever. He’s really good but he is not worth that much money, over that long of a term. They have several high-profile goalies in their system and I can’t imagine that whatever Rask’s WAR, (if they even have that), is enough to justify his team-high, cap hit

      • elrock7 - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:38 PM

        because Rinne has proven it. 1 good year and wham! 56 mil. How very un-Bruin like.

      • pirovash88 - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:38 PM

        Dude, not even Quick is making that much and his extension was 2 more years than Rask got. Not to mention that was right after Quick had just taken his team to their first stanley cup..

      • elrock7 - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:42 PM

        Rinne has been better, longer. Rask has 1 good year and WHAM! 56 mil? How very un-Bruin like!

      • adambballn - Jul 10, 2013 at 7:10 PM

        The Hawks have won 2 cups with a better than average goalie each time and good defense… I don’t like the idea of paying that much for a goalie. A good defense, IMO, is more important than an “elite” goalie.

    • dudermcrbohan - Jul 10, 2013 at 9:12 PM

      I agree, and with your examples too. downvotes aren’t warranted. Like you said, he is a great goalie, but i think people overlook the fact that he also has one of the best defenses in front of him.

      I forget which game it was in the finals, but i was impressed when he stopped 20 something shots in the first period.

      Great netminder, but i always feel as if the wheels could fall off at any given point in a game.

    • itsallniceonice - Jul 10, 2013 at 9:58 PM

      So what would you have proposed the Bruins do instead? They still have very good core pieces able to do well in the playoffs and they aren’t going to waste it on some unproven goalie.

      I actually agree that the deal is too long and too much money. He was beyond overhyped during the playoff run but that’s what the media and fans do. He is definitely elite though in today’s NHL, big bodied butterfly goaltender that makes his positional saves and hopefully the out of position ones. I would still rather have Quick and maybe Lundqvist though over Rask though.

      • hockeyflow33 - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:18 AM

        Yea it certainly is an interesting decision and there isn’t an obvious answer. It would be interesting to know what both sides started with as their tentpoles because it seems like the Bruins overpaid and went too long but maybe they think he is the best goalie in the league.

        I hope I’m wrong and he wins 5 Cups but I think that clutch players always have that ability and it seems like he’s lacking that.

    • loubearkane - Jul 11, 2013 at 7:10 AM

      Good goalie , too long of a contract for too much money the lockout hasn’t taught the owners anything. The Bruins have a older team , should of been a 3 year deal.

    • greenmtnboy31 - Jul 11, 2013 at 11:18 AM

      True dat!

  3. rosloe62 - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:23 PM

    I guess we now know around what Crawford is going to ask for.

    • adambballn - Jul 10, 2013 at 7:12 PM

      And the Hawks won’t pay him anything near that, too many other mouths to feed… I think you’ll see Raanta between the pipes for the Hawks in 2014-15.

  4. thetruth1313 - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:25 PM

    As a Bruins fan- I love it! Now get Bergy’s extension done.

    • spitfisher - Jul 10, 2013 at 8:43 PM

      As a bruins fan I hate it, spending money like that you won’t have your better players deep in to the roster. You watch in 3 years.

      1 good year and he locked into 8 for 7m per year, more than Chara. Ever think to ask how good he really is without Seidenberg and Chara playing 30 minutes in front of him?

      6.5-7mill might be the number, but to me 5 years max.

      This signing is “Pittsburgh” stupid.

      • tdrusher225 - Jul 10, 2013 at 10:20 PM

        I agree, but the Bruins weren’t in a position to bust his hump on this. He took the challenge of taking a lesser contract to prove his worth and proved it big time. For the Bruins, that’s what happens when you take that challenge and lose, you lose leverage and are essentially forced to pay him what he’s earned. You want to treat your players well and trying to nickel and dime him down isn’t sending a good message after he took a back seat to Thomas for 2 years and then had a Vezina-caliber season and a very good playoff performance, playing on a 1-year, 3.5 mil contract. Rask wanted the big dollars and, though I’m not a fan of the contract, he earned it.

      • hockeyflow33 - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:20 AM

        The thing is I don’t think he did take a lesser contract. He still hasn’t proven that he can play a full season as a starter; I know he played this whole past season with unreal numbers but it was still half a season.

      • greenmtnboy31 - Jul 11, 2013 at 11:21 AM

        Actually, this is Boston stupid as they are the dummies that signed him to this ridiculous contract. If he had a truly Vezina caliber season, then he would have been one of the finalists for that trophy; he didn’t, so he wasn’t.

        As a Habs fan, this is good news to see a team in our division make a dumb move like this. Vancouver and Philly are finding out the hard way and Boston will soon learn that same lesson.

  5. bcsteele - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:27 PM

    I’m glad the lock out was worth getting rid of those long term contracts that end up hurting teams down the road…oh wait…

    Nothing against Rask cause he’s awesome between the pipes but I see any team that signs this type of deal as something they’re going to regret later. But hey, it wasn’t as bad as what the Leafs did this off season…

    • hockeyflow33 - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:41 PM

      Give me one long term goalie contract that hasn’t worked out…

      *Please note the extreme sarcasm that many seem to miss

  6. pirovash88 - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:29 PM

    Talk about being overpaid.. Rask is not worth that price tag.

  7. neelyisgod - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    Congrats to Tuukka but have to wonder….Khudobin got 800k for 1 year from Carolina and was pretty good for the B’s with that defense in front of him. Could the B’s spent the other 6.2 mil on a sniper or pulled off another trade for one?

  8. jessejames182 - Jul 10, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    I think Rask is an amazing goalie. But a max length contract for the second highest payroll seems a bit overdoing it. He obviously has tremendous skill and deserves to he the starter on any team, but he’s not that far removes from being overtaken by Thomas, and this past season was only half of what a real workload is. 5 years I could understand.

  9. pastabelly - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:03 PM

    I guess Malcolm Subban is officially on the market . . .NOW!!!!!!

    Hard to fault him for the two late Chicago goals and the only soft goals he gave up in the Chicago series were in Game 4. He saved their behinds in the Toronto series and had one huge brain fart against the Rangers. He was either going to get $6.5 or $7M. Good deal for the Bruins. Bergeron should get similar cash per year, but less years.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Jul 10, 2013 at 8:06 PM

      Subban is still a few years away from the NHL. And even when he reaches that level he’ll most likely serve an apprenticeship under Rask, much like Rask did under Thomas. There’s no need to rush Subban along. They have Svedberg and now Johnson in front of him in line for the backup job. Don’t think Chiarellii would consider trading him, unless they’re getting elite talent in return.

  10. dboldave - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:11 PM

    I don’t mind the money but I’m not a fan of the length of the contract.

    I can’t complain too much because it wasn’t that long ago that us Bruin’s fans were complaining about how they never paid anyone! Total 180!

  11. tjvalley - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:17 PM

    As much as I respect the skill of rask, most goalies are a product of there team defense. I didn’t watch rask a lot but I do feel that if the bruins decline in front of him he will be less effective for them. I don’t think any goalie should be committed that kind of cap space for that long. If I was the bruins and I wanted him for 8 years it would be first 4 at $7mil and then incrementally less every year from then. Like year 5-$5.5mil, 6-$5mil, 7-$4.5mil, 8-$4mil. That would give him a team friendlier cap hit of 5.875 and be paid accordingly for his services as he gets older.

    • hockeyflow33 - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:23 PM

      I completely agree with you and the money aspect.

      That being said, he’s only 26 and goalies don’t usually reach their prime until their early 30′s so hopefully he’s still getting better.

      • elrock7 - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:56 PM

        Goalies reach their prime in their mid-twenties. After that reflexes and quickness start to regress. Do you think goalie is a Marty Brodeur?

      • hockeyflow33 - Jul 10, 2013 at 7:09 PM

        That’s simply not true. Goalies have their best seasons in their early 30′s. At that level the position relies a lot less on reflexes.

  12. blackhawks2010 - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:32 PM

    Crawford’s market value was just established….

  13. giantssb42champs - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:38 PM

    Ouch big cap hit.

  14. dagrit5 - Jul 10, 2013 at 6:50 PM

    Way too much for an alien face with a lunch lady haircut. Sucks for the B’s.

  15. pone27 - Jul 10, 2013 at 7:06 PM

    Crawfords market value has not been established. He was in front of arguably the best defense AND offense the year he wins the cup. I am a Hawks fan, but Raata will be a solid tender, and Crawford will need to maintain consistency. Last season will be his career season. At most, 4.5 per year, 4 years.

    Rask IMO is not worth 7 mil for 8 years… At all. You wanna toss him that per year, 3 is about right.

    Rinne deserves his contract ten fold. Clearly you guys never watched him in net.

    Lundy, well, good luck Rangers. Dude will get 8.5 a year. He is without a doubt the best goaltender in the league the past 3 seasons and has plenty left in the tank.

    • adambballn - Jul 10, 2013 at 7:18 PM

      Completely agree… if Crawford is asking for anything NEAR what Rask just got paid I’ll have no problem at all with the Hawks letting him walk. I believe Raanta was signed in anticipation of Crawford’s market value, which will likely be very high after next season, unless he’s unexpectedly awful. Crawford is good but the Hawks D, much like the Bruins D, make goalies look good.

    • hockeyflow33 - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:22 AM

      They let Niemi go after his Cup win and that proved to be a wise decision

    • habssuck - Jul 11, 2013 at 9:27 AM

      And, your best goalie in the league, “lundy” got outplayed by who? There goes your theory…

      • greenmtnboy31 - Jul 11, 2013 at 11:32 AM

        I see a couple of continuing problems here.
        1) based on your “handle”, you’re too concerned with Montreal.
        2) based on your comment, you’re worrying about the wrong goalie. Focus on Crawford, the guy who won the Cup.
        3) Boston just overpaid for a goalie they are going to be looking to unload in a couple of years; aka Vancouver, Philly, NY Islanders, etc….

  16. blackhawkslove - Jul 10, 2013 at 7:36 PM

    Elite goalies stand on their head time in and time out. The blackhawks defense is not that much significantly different than 2011-12 vs 2012-2013. Crawford had the skill to shine and he deservedly did so. Same with Rask. While its true that defense does make a goaltenders job easier, lest we forget the barrages that both netminders took during their post season run to keep their teams in the game. The amount of amazing glove saves crow made to keep a game 1-0 or 2-1 are too many to count.

    Expect CC to get a huge pay day. He’s earned it. His only blemish was 2011-2012 season.

  17. tjvalley - Jul 10, 2013 at 7:41 PM

    I truly feel that I said it best. Front loaded eight year contract. Reasonable cap hit for the team. The bruins are stupid. And goalies are a tough on the body position. One wrong move or incident will make the bruins regret the term and money. Goalies are good for average five years at best. Not everyone is a brodour. There rare and situational(trap style in 90s=less wear and tear). We most likely won’t be talking about rask and how goo he IS then in 5 years. If we are, then good for Boston. But I’ll play the odds.

  18. s2mikey - Jul 10, 2013 at 8:55 PM

    I don’t see this being good at all for Boston. Rask started hot in the playoffs but he was getting TORCHED by Chicago in games 4,5 & 6. Plenty of stoppable shots got by the dude, IMO. And, loom at the Stanley cup winners over the last ten years or so. The monster goalie concept doesn’t work anymore. You can’t tie up too much cash in a goalie. Ask the Sabres how that’s working out. Whatever, not my problem. Way too long of a deal for too much money.

  19. 1901wmadison - Jul 10, 2013 at 9:14 PM

    Completely agree with the other hawks fans about Crawford. He played amazing this cup run, and I’d certainly like to see him stay. But there is absolutely NO way Bowman gives him that kind of money for those years and I’d be appalled if he did.

    Big goalie contracts do not help teams win cups – you need much more than just good play in the net to win.

    If Crawford wants more than 3 or 4 years, Raanta will be the goalie after next year.

    Toews and Kane are due for extensions/new deals after 14-15 and will definitely take precedence over Crawford.

  20. stakex - Jul 10, 2013 at 9:44 PM

    Seems like $7 million is the going rate for a star goalie these days.

    I have a feeling a lot of these new max length deals (not just for goalies) are going to bite teams in the ass in the years to come. Rask has been very solid in his career so far, and shown flashes of brilliance. Still though, he has yet to spend an entire full length season as a starting goalie and you would think Boston would want to see that before betting big time on him.

  21. Navy Teacher - Jul 10, 2013 at 10:08 PM

    I kept reading about this megadeal and I don’t get it. The market was set at 5.5 million per year. Why would they give him 7 million over 8 years? Didn’t they just draft Subban in the first round LAST YEAR?!? Why not offer him 15 – 18 million over 3 years. Who would outbid the Bruins? Unfortunately I think they will regret this deal in 2-3 years. Something else to consider – Jacobs will not amnesty a player and lose millions of dollars in the process if Rask tanks or if Subban proves to be the goalie of the future in a few years.

  22. itsallniceonice - Jul 10, 2013 at 10:16 PM

    Not a good contract but the Bruins were handcuffed. Have a great roster and they can’t leave it up to some unproven goaltender to take them to where they want to go. That being said we’ll see how Rask does. Chara is getting old and the battle against big bodied butterfly goaltenders continues on. Could work out but history says no.

  23. dboldave - Jul 10, 2013 at 10:18 PM

    I was expecting (or hoping) for them to lock him up for 5 years. They have a few good goaltenders coming up that may be ready to step in and take over if they wanted to move on from Rask at that time. I still think they could do this if they wanted to with a trade. I’d be willing to bet that there are a handful of teams out there that would be willing to pay Rask what the Bruins did. In a year or two, I’d expect to see the average for a Vezina-candidate type to creep up even higher. So a trade could still be likely down the road.

    Like others have said though, health is an issue and Tuukka stayed healthy this year but the real challenge is staying healthy and good AFTER you get paid. I like Rask and I hope he stays the course.

  24. cambee99 - Jul 10, 2013 at 10:43 PM

    Rask has only played 139 regular season games over 6 years, and 35 in 2 playoff seasons.

    He is a solid goalie. However, he has 3 injuries over the course of 6 years and is prone to mental lapses when not challenged.

    Way to long of deal, but the only way the B’s keep him.

  25. chanceoffleury1 - Jul 10, 2013 at 11:15 PM

    This is basically the EXACT same situation the Pens were in with Letang. You have a guy who has had a lot of success recently and a good chunk of that is very possibly a reflection of the team around him as much as it is his own talent, his best days are probably still ahead of him, he wants a long expensive contract, and you’re in a pickle because you have a ton of cheaper prospects that could (or couldn’t) end up JUST like him. By trading him you’re giving up a huge part of your core and team identity, but by keeping him you are sacrificing a ton of cap space and possibly the development of your even younger future. It’s a tough situation that any good team will have and the con of having a good development program.

  26. skarfacci - Jul 10, 2013 at 11:29 PM

    I think he is overrated. As soon as Chicago figured out how to break down Boston’s defense, they had too depend on Rask. He didn’t get the job done. He was totally out of position on the series winner in game 6.

    • greenmtnboy31 - Jul 11, 2013 at 11:30 AM

      Completely agree, he couldn’t get it done when his team needed him. An elite goalie would not have been so out of position on the game winner in game 6 and an elite goalie would not have given up that game tying goal, although Rask may have distracted or impacted by Chara falling down in front of him when he should have been defending.

      The amount and the length of this contract are a lot to pay for second tier goalie.

  27. comeonnowguys - Jul 11, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    TUUUUUUUUUUUUU much.

  28. amityvillefun - Jul 11, 2013 at 12:17 AM

    Goalie hits lottery…film at 11…

  29. nhstateline - Jul 11, 2013 at 6:49 AM

    Jacobs didn’t decide on the amnesty buyout non-use. The contracts they might look at doing that with all have trade value so there was/is no need to do that. The one that you could make a case for them trying to do it with, Marc Savard, would have meant that they paid for something instead of having their insurance company pay for it. No business would do that and optics of buying Savard out (assuming they even could do it) would have been terrible. Instead what they can do is spend to what their cap number would be if Savard was healthy because they can put him on LTIR the day before they have to be cap compliant and solve their problem that way (and make the insurance company keep paying). Jacobs had nothing to do with this. I’m happy they resigned Rask but this is too many years and a little too much money. But he wouldn’t take a lesser offer last year so good for him for believing in himself and winning.

  30. iwillfindyou - Jul 11, 2013 at 10:59 AM

    Good luck with this. They will have a real hard time keeping guys under contract now because of this. Dumb move in my opinion. Too long. Too much money.

  31. greenmtnboy31 - Jul 11, 2013 at 11:26 AM

    Rask will be handcuffed as long as he has Chara and the rest of the mediocre D in front of him. If the B’s can unload Chara on some unsuspecting them, the Rask has a better shot. The fact is that Boston severely overpaid for a guy who couldn’t hold down the fort when the season & the Cup were on the line. They just needed him to be an elite goalie for 1:20 and he couldn’t hold up his end of the bargain. Good news for the rest of the Northeast division; thank you Boston and Chiapet.

    • sunderlanding - Jul 11, 2013 at 5:36 PM

      You’re either stupid or making a bad joke. The bruins have the best defensive system in the league. They’re goalies always have good numbers, and all their players have great plus/minus. This is the result of a good defensive system. Plus the save of the year was Chara’s against the penquins. The guy can play D.

  32. sunderlanding - Jul 11, 2013 at 5:34 PM

    Rask is overrated. Goalies excel in the Bruins style of play, but I agree that he won’t be stealing you a victory. Technically sound, but metally average.

  33. slysipops - Jul 11, 2013 at 9:41 PM

    so now you got a goalie and the CORE 5 and a lot of guys from the shelter ( no more money to spend ) ! sounds like it ought to be interesting for the Bfans ! oh, and ask the ISLANDERS how it works signing a ….looks like he’s got it ….goalie to a BIG $ LONG CONTRACT ! GO HAWKS GO !!

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