"Tuukka's got an opportunity here to take over for Tim," Julien said. "He certainly has to prove that he can, but I think he's shown the ability to be a good goaltender in this league. Maybe he doesn't have the number of games that Tim was getting, but he'll be given that opportunity as well. And if there's times where he needs a rest, we've got another goaltender that I think can do the job also."
The Bruins head into the shortened season with nine players who found jobs in Europe during the lockout -- among the most in the league -- and others who were able to play in the minors. They're hoping that gives them an edge after a one-week training camp that will leave the unprepared gasping for air.
Among them was Rask, who played in the Czech Republic.
"The start's going to be important for us, as it is for everybody," he said. "It's going to be a challenge mentally and physically, for sure. Luckily we had a lot of guys who played overseas and are in midseason form. So we've just got to make sure we know our system, we play the way we can and take care of our bodies because it's going to be a quick season, but it's also going to be a grind."
Defenseman Zdeno Chara said the number of players finding work overseas "showed the willingness of the guys to stay in shape and to sacrifice being with family and friends."
But, he said, "It's only an advantage if it works."
Another player who could benefit from the conditioning was Tyler Seguin, who played in Switzerland after an NHL season in which he led Boston with 29 goals and 67 points last season. In and out of the lineup as a rookie in 2010-11, when the Bruins won it all, the former No. 2 overall draft pick played in the 2012 All-Star game in Ottawa and signed a six-year, $34 million contract just before the lockout.
"We've said all along this guy has unlimited potential," Julien said. "And I think what you're seeing now is the more confidence he has, the better he is. And I think at one point as a young player, you're coming in playing with men and it could be intimidating, especially along the boards and when you meet up with people like Zdeno and stuff. But now certainly he's a lot more confident going after pucks and protecting it and his confidence is at the level there where I think he's going to take another step forward."
The Bruins also signed forward Brad Marchand to a four-year deal and Milan Lucic to a three-year extension in the days before the four-month lockout that shortened the season to 48 games.
Boston won the Northeast Division by 10 points last season and had the No. 2 seed in the East before losing to the Washington Capitals in seven games, in overtime, in the first round of the playoffs. That was a disappointing title defense, which the Bruins hope to compensate for this year.