I've said it before, and I'll say it again.... being a backup goaltender in the NHL is not easy. These guys are randomly called upon from night to night to get on the ice and play NHL-caliber hockey, despite the fact that they might not have seen in-game action in weeks.
But Bruins backup goaltender Chad Johnson has shown no signs of trouble. It's pretty safe to say that CJ has excelled in his position in net, posting an oustanding 10-3 record, alongside a 2.14 goals against average and a .923 save percentage (including a shutout). I mean, the guy's almost got as many wins as the Buffalo Sabres.
All jokes aside, CJ has played some great hockey for the B's. The Saskatoon native hasn't given up more than four goals in a single game all season (gave up four goals just once), and has given up two or less in 13 of his 16 appearances. He's logged a total of 843 minutes (54th in minutes, yet 35th in wins), and has won each of his last four starts for the B's.
Plus, the Rask-Johnson combo has arguably been most effective tendy-pair in the league, with a 35-16 record (the other win was Niklas Svedberg's).
Photo via bruins.nhl.com
After the Olympic break, Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli says that the goaltending situation is expected to stay about the same:
“[Post Olympics] It’ll be the same as we’ve been doing. We’re tracking at 60-20, maybe we’re a little bit ahead in favor of Tuukka, but we’re tracking in that direction so we plan to keep it kind of the same. Maybe it’s 58-24. Right now it would mean Chad needs to get more games than what he’s been getting, but that’s generally what we’re going to try and do. Chad has shown us that he can handle more games.”
It's certainly of comfort not only for Tuukka, but for all of the Bruins that Johnson has been able to effectively step in when Tuukka takes a night off. He's certainly earned his spot back there. "2 O's, 2 N's, 2 points" may not ring quite as well, but it's certainly nice to hear.