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Tuukka Rask eager to prove No. 1 status

Posted by Fluto Shinzawa, Globe Staff  June 29, 2012 12:30 PM

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WILMINGTON – On Sunday, Tuukka Rask will officially sign his one-year, $3.5 million extension, the deal that certifies the 25-year-old as the team’s go-to goalie.

“He wants to prove that he’s the No. 1 goalie for the Bruins for a long time,” said GM Peter Chiarelli. “This was the easiest way to set the stage for that.”

Rask agreed to the extension in principle on Thursday. Rask and Chris Kelly (four years, $12 million) will sign their deals on Sunday.

Rask will be a restricted free agent upon the conclusion of the extension. However, Rask will be eligible to sign a longer-term deal next January. Chiarelli said he’d be open to such a transaction, provided Rask delivers the goods in 2012-13.

Rask could have been subject to an offer sheet starting on Sunday had he not agreed to his extension. Chiarelli said there were no indications of rivals teams signing Rask to an offer sheet. The Bruins would have matched any offer.

* Alexander Khokhlachev has agreed in principle to a three-year, entry-level contract. Khokhlachev will sign the contract on Sunday. Khokhlachev, the team’s second-round pick in 2011, will report to main training camp this fall. He will then play for Spartak of the KHL in 2012-13. Khokhlachev has indicated to the Bruins that playing in the NHL remains his goal.

* Chiarelli said the team will most likely stay on the sidelines on Sunday when free agency opens.

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