The Boston Bruins lost to the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 2 after David Pastrnak was unfit to play. The series is tied at one but that wasn’t the story after the game. The story was Tuukka Rask‘s bizarre comments that he made in his postgame press conference.
Let’s start with the least puzzling comments first. Rask admitted that the atmosphere inside the arena without fans feels “dull” and it doesn’t feel to him that it’s really the first round of the playoffs.
“To be honest with you, it doesn’t really feel like playoff hockey,” Rask said. “There’s no fans. It’s kind of like you’re playing an exhibition game. Obviously, there are some scrums after the whistle. I haven’t noticed that they would be targeting me or whatnot. Things happen, people falling on you and whatnot. But it’s definitely not a playoff atmosphere.”
I understand that the Bruins are playing in front of a bunch of tarps but all of these hockey players are professional athletes and their job is to perform every time they step on the ice, fans or no fans. And if you can’t get fired up and motivated for the first round of the playoffs, then I don’t know what to tell you.
But the comments he made later in the press conference was a really bad look.
“I’m just trying to have fun and play the game,” he said. “I’m not stressing too much about results and whatnot. It’s August, and I haven’t played hockey in forever. Just go out there and have fun and see what happens.”
Not stressing too much about the results when you’re in the middle of the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs? Just go out there and see what happens? You’ve got to be kidding me.
Tuukka, do you think that the Flyers and the Lightning are just going out there and not worrying about the results? No, they’re not. Those teams are trying to go win the Stanley Cup.
Brad Marchand tried to defend his teammate but did a pretty bad job.
“I think maybe he was just talking about the round-robin games,” Marchand said. “I didn’t see his comments, but the round-robin games for us were exhibition games. They should not be labeled playoff games. And those were ones that we were trying to prepare for the game. Maybe he was talking about that.”
Sorry Brad, nice try. Rask made these terrible comments right after he lost Game 2 of a playoff series. Rask should be embarrassed for himself that he isn’t stressing about the results of playoff games when he is literally the most important player on the ice for the Bruins and could dictate if the team moves on to the next round or not.
Maybe if Rask sat on the bench for a little bit then he would start to care about the results.
(Photo: Elsa Garrison/Getty Images)