Bruins face goaltending controversy as playoffs approach.
Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports  

Bruins face goaltending controversy as playoffs approach.

The Boston Bruins are going to have a tough decision to make heading into the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Jonathan Larivee

Don't look now but there may be some controversy between the pipes for the Boston Bruins.

The Bruins made it clear at the National Hockey League's trade deadline that goaltender Jeremy Swayman is their goalie of the future. There were rampant rumors that the Bruins not only tried to trade goaltender Linus Ullmark, but it has also been widely reported that the only reason Ullmark wasn't trade was due to the fact that he blocked a trade to the Los Angeles Kings using the limited no-trade clause in his contract.

Fast forward several days later and the Bruins suddenly find themselves in a position where Swayman is floundering heading into the Stanley Cup playoffs, while Ullmark continues to shine.

It is too small a smaple size for concern just yet, but Swayman has now looked shaky in back to back games for the Bruins. On Saturday against the Philadelphia Flyers, the Bruins nearly choked away a comfortable lead late, only barely hanging on to beat ther Flyers by a score of 6-5. You can't place all of the blame on Swayman for the team's late collapse in that game, but he did only stop 24 of the 29 shots he faced for a lowly .828 save percentage.

Swayman's previous outing against the St. Louis Blues wasn't any better, with Swayman stopping just 17 of the 21 shots he faced on the night for a .809 save percentage against the Blues.

All the while Ullmark has continued to put in stellar performances down the stretch, leaving a real question about which goalie Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery will lean on come the Stanley Cup playoffs. Will he go with the goaltender that the Bruins are clearly committing to for the long haul? Or will the temptation to go with the hot hand be too great in spite of the fact that many believe he is likely to be moved this summer?

Montgomery isn't saying.

"I’m not going to commit to anything," siad Montgomery as per the Boston Globe. "But I am very comfortable platooning them in the playoffs."

Montgomery did however admit that the Bruins need to get Swayman out of his current funk, all the while taking some of the pressure off his young goaltender.

"It’s not a concern, you know, but we need him to get back to the form that he was at," Montgomery said. "Some of that is [the fault of] our team defense, and some of that is, you know, the schedule and the way it happens."

It won't be an easy decision, but it is one the Bruins are going to have to make.