Razor returns to Beantown

Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Andrew Raycroft faces his former Boston Bruins team tonight for the...

Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Andrew Raycroft faces his former Boston Bruins team tonight for the first time since being dealt in the offseason. (Toronto Sun/Ernest Doroszuk)

MIKE ZEISBERGER -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 4:22 PM ET

Maple Leafs goaltender Andrew Raycroft admits he asked the Boston Bruins to trade him last season.

"It was back in January or February," Raycroft said yesterday. "Then the season played out. And then when it was over, what happened, happened."

What happened, in the end, was that the Bruins dealt the Belleville native to the Maple Leafs for goaltending prospect Tuukka Rask, the 21st overall pick in the 2005 entry draft, during the '06 draft in late June in Vancouver.

Raycroft and former teammates Joe Thornton and Glen Murray told the Toronto Sun earlier this week that the Bruins gave up on him too early.

Those claims were addressed by Bruins assistant general manager Jeff Gorton, who was involved in the Raycroft trade.

"The only thing I will say is we never gave up on Andrew," Gorton told the Boston Herald yesterday. "We traded him for a very good prospect and what's considered by us the best goalie outside of the National Hockey League (in Rask).

"So that's not giving up on somebody. Giving up on somebody is not qualifying them, or letting them go for nothing. We didn't do that.

"Andrew's a pretty good goalie. He's having a good year. Good for him. We'll leave it at that."

Asked about Raycroft's trade request, Gorton's take on the timing of it did not quite jive with that offered by Raycroft.

"He asked a few weeks prior to the draft to be traded," Gorton said. "And he had asked not to be put in a situation where there were three goalies. So we made the move."

Raycroft is the first to admit that his 2005-06 injury-plagued season was sub-par. But who in his position wouldn't feel like the team had lost confidence in him after watching Tim Thomas and Hannu Toivonen pass him on the Bruins depth chart?

When Raycroft makes his first start in a Leafs jersey against his former team tonight in Boston, Toivonen will not be there to see it. The Bruins demoted the Finnish goaltender earlier this week.


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