Can Khudobin be Mr. Bean(town)?

(courtesy of Getty)

When it comes to drama in one of America’s most demanding sports towns the Boston Bruins are at the bottom of the barrel. It comes as no surprise since they do share the back pages with the Sox, Pats, and Celtics all of whom were relevant to Bostonians before the Bruins won their first Stanley Cup in 39 years last summer. Their bearded hero came in the form of Tim Thomas who not only carried the team on his back at times throughout the post-season but was also awarded MVP honors to boot.

Things in Beantown looked promising as the B’s became the talk of the town for all the right reasons, that is until the man they call Timmy opted to forgo the traditional White House meeting because he had his own agenda. Fans were left picking sides in the highly patriotic city as they found it hard to believe their knight in shining armor put himself above the team. Last week, things only worsened when Thomas confirmed that he would be taking a year away from hockey to focus on family and faith at the ripe age of 38.

What’s worse is that the $5 million that’s owed to him will count towards the cap. In short the Bruins have quite the dilemma in the crease and not much money to work with. The obvious solution is to go with back-up Tuukka Rask who has been sitting pretty on the B’s bench watching Thomas for four seasons now. However, Boston’s top AHL goal, Anton Khudobin is also worth a consideration to be in net come opening night 2013 2012 and here’s why.

For starters, his last name is eerily similar to that of popular Mexican style eatery sprinkled across the US and conveniently located across the street from TD Garden. This is a PR dream come true as we all know hockey fans are fond of Russians and burritos. Now granted his name is actually pronounced who-dobin but who are you as Americans not to butcher it any way you please?

His numbers in the NHL can not compare to those of Rask who has been lucky to carry Thomas’s equipment bag across the country while gleefully speaking Finnish to one another. There was talk that Khudobin was set to be recalled by the Bruins in the second half of the season if not for his wrist injury. When he finally did make his debut he earned his first career win for the Bruins.

He has stepped in when needed (mostly in Minnesota) and has shown his potential in Providence. It’s more plausible to imagine Boston next year playing the goalie-merry-go-round game with both their young net minders splitting the time. Khudobin just seems hungrier for some reason (Qdoba pun aside) and how can you not love a pioneer who is the first Russian goalie in franchise history?

June has only started and who knows if the Bruins make a move in the off-season? Thomas has a chance to change his mind countless times and there is that expiring CBA to deal with. As much as LOVE Rask we just want our boys to be better represented in the league and more so in the crease. After all this isn’t From Russia with is it?

Why not give the kid a chance? After all you’re only the Bruins and people likely stopped caring thanks to your sad excuse of a baseball team.

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