Despite a disappointing ending to the their season, the Boston Bruins 2013-2014 campaign was for the most part quite impressive. The club captured its first Presidents’ Trophy since 1990. They even won 12 consecutive games down the stretch, securing a playoff spot with great ease.
Though like all great teams, the Bruins were built to succeed from the net out. The goaltending duo of Tuukka Rask and Chad Johnson flourished all season. Rask’s accomplishments go with out saying, considering he was named a Vezinna Trophy finalist.
But Johnson, in his first full season at the NHL level, served as a more than an admirable back-up. He performed above and beyond expectations, in my opinion. His ability to spell Rask down the stretch without missing a beat proved how valuable he really was and is.
Based on his success throughout the course of the season, it’ll be hard to deny Johnson the pay he deserves. He’s set to become an unrestricted free agent.
The Bruins would be wise to re-sign him, but just last season we saw them let Anton Khudobin walk after thriving in a similar fashion to that of Johnson. If they ultimately decide to forgo the signing, Johnson will certainly be snatched up in an instant, possibly in a destination where more playing time is available.
Johnson did struggle at times as he was forced to battle through a pair of noteworthy losing streaks, but his overall record and statistics at the close of the year trump the negatives.
His 17-4-3 record was a product of hardwork and increasing confidence. He finished with an impressive .925 save percentage and a 2.10 goals against average, both which ranked him sixth in the NHL among qualified goalies.
Without a doubt, the Bruins wouldn’t have elevated through the standings if Johnson had not been the rock he was in his appearences. Rask remained fresh and the two worked together in stifling opposing teams like no one’s business.
Final Grade: A