Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli confirmed on Friday that star goaltender Tim Thomas is seriously thinking about not playing in 2012-13.
Thomas has one year left on his current deal, which carries a $5 million cap hit for the 2012-13 season. The no-movement clause that is a part of the deal expires July 1.
"Tim came to me...through his agent and said that he's seriously considering taking the year off," said Chiarelli during a conference call. "So, as of now, I am operating under the premise that there's a strong possibility that he'll be taking a year off and we'd have to go about our business without Tim Thomas."
The 38-year-old Thomas went 35-19-1 with a 2.36 goals-against average and a .920 save percentage during the regular season. In the playoffs, he had a 2.14 GAA and a .923 save percentage. Boston lost in seven games to Washington in the first round.
Chiarelli added that he wasn't "exactly sure" what led to Thomas' move, but the goaltender indicated that his family was first and foremost in his thinking.
Thomas won the 2009 and 2011 Vezina Trophy, and has a 196-121-45 record and 2.48 GAA in 378 career games with the Bruins. In 50 postseason games, he holds a 29-21 mark with a 2.07 GAA.
Thomas won the 2011 Conn Smythe Trophy after leading Boston to its first Stanley Cup title since 1972.
Boston's backup goalie Tuukka Rask becomes a restricted free agent on July 1, but the Bruins intend on re-signing him. Rask went 11-8-3 with a 2.05 GAA and .929 save percentage this season.
"I'd be more than satisfied with Tuukka and [Anton] Khudobin as our goaltenders," Chiarelli said.