The Boston Bruins teamed up with the Make-a-Wish Foundation last month to help nine-year-old Maddie Santotuosso of Topfield, Mass. meet her favorite player, Tuukka Rask, and take the ice alongside the Bruins netminder at a team practice. Though she strapped on identical pads and a No. 40 jersey, she lacked one thing: a black and gold mask.
Rask, as he has a habit of doing, came to the rescue.
The Vezina Trophy favorite commissioned his personal mask artist, Ron Slater, to create a goalie mask nearly identical to his own, complete with demonic bear and several modifications. Instead of “RASK,” Maddie’s name is written across the chin. Replacing the Finnish flag are the words “Kick Sarcoma,” along with a yellow cancer awareness ribbon.
Santotuosso, who is battling stage IV sarcoma, a rare tissue cancer, stood in net and took a few shots from Rask’s teammates in a March 26 practice.