Bruins grant Tuukka Rask leave of absence, confirm Charlie McAvoy is in concussion protocol

Boston Bruins goalie Tuuka Rask has been granted a leave of absence to deal with a personal matter. Boston GM Don Sweeney met with the media on Friday after the announcement to clarify that Rask's absence for an undetermined amount of time isn't health related. 

"It's important to respect his privacy and allow him to deal with it for the next few days," Sweeney said. 

Sweeney also confirmed that Charlie McAvoy, the Bruins' 20-year-old defenseman, has been out these past few weeks in concussion protocol after suffering a concussion in an Oct. 18 game against the Oilers in Edmonton. Sweeney said McAvoy is working his way back into the lineup.. 

Rask, 31, who's in the fifth year of an eight-year, $56 million deal, has started seven game this season, going 4-4-0 with goals-against average of 3.05 and a .901 save percentage. He replaced Jaroslav Halak in net in Thursday's loss to the Canucks and gave up three goals on just 14 shots after Halak surrendered five goals on 19 shots in an 8-4 loss. 

"I was just trying to keep it under 10 [goals allowed] -- that's what I was worried about," Rask said, per CBS Boston. "But yeah, you know, like I said, a loss is a loss, it doesn't really matter at the end of the day. It was kind of a crazy game both ways. You know, a lot of goals scored and there was -- at the end it looked like everyone was napping in the crowd. It was just one of those games where there wasn't a whole lot of action on either end -- low shots and you know all of a sudden it's 5-3, 8-5 whatever. So yeah, weird game but that's entertainment and we're just providing it." 

The Bruins' next game is Saturday night at home against the Maple Leafs, their Atlantic rivals, who trail only the Tampa Bay Lighting in the division. Tampa Bay leads the Atlantic with 25 points, followed by Toronto (20), Montreal (19) and then Boston (18). 

After that, the Bruins hit the road for a four-game Western swing through Colorado, Dallas, Arizona and Detroit. 

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