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Tim Thomas atop the NHL, bringing Bruins with him

NHL.com @NHL

BOSTON (AP) - The Boston Bruins couldn't trade Tim Thomas over the summer.

Now they can't afford to let him go.

The 2009 Vezina Trophy winner and 2010 Olympian is back from a hip injury that hobbled him last season, when he lost his starting job. Now he's healed, and he's proving to be even better than he was, when he was the NHL's leading goaltender two years ago.

Thomas leads the league in all the major categories, and his five shutouts in 19 games matches his career high for any previous season.

Thomas says he isn't worried about last year, and he's not trying to prove to anyone else that he can still be a dominant goaltender at the age of 36.

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