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[Report] Tim Thomas May Take Next Season Off

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Story on NHL.com

According to a report, Boston Bruins starting goalie Tim Thomas may be contemplating taking off the 2012-13 season.

ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun reported Thursday night that Thomas was contemplating the idea of a sabbatical for next season.

According to the Boston Globe, who also reported the story, Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli will comment Friday on the situation.

Thomas has one-year left on his current deal. The no-movement clause that is a part of the deal, however, expires July 1. Thomas carries a $5 million cap hit for 2012-13.

This latest report continues a strange year for the 38-year-old Thomas, who received criticism for skipping the team's visit to the White House to celebrate the team's 2011 Stanley Cup title. After the team was knocked out of this year's Stanley Cup Playoffs in a seven-game loss to Washington in the first round, the 38-year-old Thomas was non-committal about his future in Boston.

But, this decision, if true, would be even stranger. Thomas is in solid health this offseason, as opposed to last summer when hip surgery slowed his preparation for the season and put him in a position to have to win back the starting job during the 2010-11 season.

Plus, Thomas is coming off another strong campaign. He went 35-19-1 with a 2.36 GAA and a .920 save percentage during the regular season. In the playoffs, he had a 2.14 GAA and a .923 save percentage.

The Bruins also have to worry about Tuukka Rask, their backup goalie who is ready to take on a bigger role. Rask becomes a restricted free agent on July 1, but the Bruins have every intention of re-signing the No. 1 in waiting.

Rask went 11-8-3 with a 2.05 goals-against average and .929 save percentage this season, but did not play again after suffer a lower-body injury on March 3.

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A source close to Thomas later confirmed his thinking to ESPNBoston.com and also said that Thomas had brought this idea up on more than one occasion over the course of the 2011-12 season. The source also said that Thomas moved his family to Colorado last fall because he wants to live there when he retires, and the motive behind taking a season off would be to train there for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Thomas was a member of the 2010 U.S. Olympic hockey team.
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