Last night, at the SuperSkills competition in Raleigh, NC, Zdeno Chara
may have set a new record with a 105.4 mph blast en route to his fourth consecutive Hardest Shot title, but there was another Boston Bruins All-Star who provided another memorable moment and nearly stole the show.
B's goalie Tim Thomas
fell while rounding the net during his race with Carolina Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward, as part of the Fastest Skater competitions.
But despite what could have been an embarrassing moment, the NHL veteran handled it with a smile and a few laughs.
“I was just going to slow down and do a tight turn around the net and pick it up down the straightaway and so I really wasn’t prepared,” Thomas said.
“I had never practiced on that big of a radius turn. But that’s okay I mean you know hometown boy [Carolina goalie Cam Ward] won, but I think everyone knew who the fastest skater was.”
Thomas was able to pick himself back up quickly and almost caught up to Ward. Thomas finished with a time of 18.895 seconds.
Thomas was asked how B’s General Manager Peter Chiarelli must have felt watching his All-Star goalie fall to the ice.
“Nothing, he sees this about five times a day in practice one way or another. I don’t think he was worries one bit,” Thomas said,
“That’s how I was able to get up so fast, plenty of practice falling.”
In addition to his appearance in the Fastest Skater competition, Thomas also minded net during the Elimination Shootout segment of the night.
He stopped five on nine attempts, including that of teammate Chara. The B’s captain didn’t lay a 105.4 mph bomb on his goalie, but it’s something Thomas has felt before.
“If you catch one in the palm, you feel basically like someone’s been pounding your hand with a meat tenderizer,” Thomas said of saving a “Chara bomb.” ---Hannah Becker