January 26, 2012

Thomas 'followed his conscience,' appreciates support

By Jesse Connolly

Tim Thomas could only laugh when TSN’s James Duthie sarcastically suggested it’d been an uneventful week for the Bruins netminder. 

After widespread scrutiny both locally and beyond for his decision to sit out of the team’s visit to the White House on Monday, Thomas told Duthie – the MC for the event – that he appreciates those that have been supportive of his decision.

“You know, I followed my conscience,” Thomas responded when Duthie asked if he thought his absence would turn into such a big story. “I’m extremely grateful for all the support I’ve gotten from my teammates, fans and friends. I said in that statement it’d be the only time I’d be addressing that topic. We’re here in Ottawa to celebrate the game of hockey and I’m just extremely excited to be a part of that.”

Thomas, selected by teammate Zdeno Chara of Thursday night’s All-Star Fantasy Draft, is making his fourth straight All-Star appearance.

The 37-year-old veteran is the only netminder to ever earn the win in three straight All-Star Games and will look to make it 4-for-4 on Sunday afternoon in Ottawa.

Maybe then he’ll have enough on his resume to warrant being picked in the first round.

“Yeah I’m hoping by the time I get to 42, maybe I’ll be number one,” said Thomas, picked behind Wings forward Pavel Datsyuk for Team Chara. “Pavel is a really good player so it’s going to be hard to beat him.”