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Bruins Expecting To Have Tuukka Rask Back In Net Thursday Vs. Islanders

BOSTON (CBS) -- It sounds like Thursday will be Tuukka Time for the Bruins. Following Wednesday's practice, Boston head coach Bruce Cassidy said that he is expecting to have Tuukka Rask in net for Thursday night's game against the New York Islanders.

But we've heard this a few times over the last week-plus, so Cassidy was quick to add the caveat that Rask would return "assuming no setbacks."

It has been over a month since Boston's top goaltender played in a full game back on March 7. Rask has been dealing with an upper-body injury since then, returning only briefly on March 25. He lasted just one period that night before being forced out of the game after reaggravating the ailment.

Rask is 8-4-2 with a .907 save percentage and 2.40 goals against average in his 15 games played this season. With backup goalie Jaroslav Halak also out since April 3 due to COVID protocols, the Bruins have relied on rookies Jeremy Swayman and Dan Vladar in net, with the young duo going 3-2-1 for Boston.

Vladar practiced with the Providence Bruins on Wednesday, making him the likely candidate to be sent down to make room for Rask on the Boston roster.

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