The Boston Bruins have lots of depth in net entering the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs, and they've officially announced their goalie tandem for the first-round series versus the Washington Capitals.
B's head coach Bruce Cassidy revealed Tuesday night that rookie Jeremy Swayman will be the backup netminder behind starter Tuukka Rask entering Game 1 on Saturday night.
"I think he’s earned that,” Cassidy said of Swayman.
“Obviously, a tough call with Jaro with his experience. He’s just played more down the stretch here, and some of that was out of circumstance. Tuukka got hurt, Jaro went into COVID. So there’s a quarantine, and then the goalie is a little tougher to get thrown back in there, so a little time to get back up to speed. I thought Swayman grabbed the ball and ran with it. That’s the decision there. That could change as we go along, obviously, as Jaro gets more reps, but right now I think Swayman has done everything we’ve asked.”
It's unfortunate for Halak, who lost the job mostly through no fault of his own. Swayman, to his credit, really earned the role with his spectacular play.
He posted a 7-3-0 record with a 1.50 GAA and a .945 save percentage. According to Natural Stat Trick, Swayman's .895 save percentage on high-danger shot attempts was the best among all goalies who played 10 or more games.
Swayman made 30 saves on 32 shots in a 2-1 loss to the Capitals in Tuesday night's regular season finale. It was a quality performance by the rookie, especially when you consider the Bruins rested almost all of their regulars.