King For a Day

Posted: June 9, 2014 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

henrikl

For Henrik Lundqvist, the King of New York, a 2-0 deficit is nothing to write home about.

Of course, home is an ocean away. The native of Are, Sweden sees his team in an early series hole against the Los Angeles Kings in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final. This despite the fact that New York hasn’t trailed the entire series, with both losses coming in overtime of games that the Rangers led throughout. Tonight, the 32-year old netminder will have to steal the show like Broadway’s best, as Madison Square Garden hosts its first Cup Final game in 20-years.

In game two, Lundqvist was frustrated with the lack of a goalie interference call on Dwight King during Los Angeles’ comeback. The Kings’ forward was arguably pushed into the crease by a Rangers defender. But, Lundqvist was adamant that the referees were to blame. “I’m extremely disappointed on that call or non-call,” said Lundqvist. “They’ve got to be consistent with that rule.” While the reffing wasn’t Cup caliber, neither was Lundqvist, whose team blew a duo of two goal leads in game two after choking away a similar L.A. deficit in game one.

If there’s one thing that Los Angeles is, it’s resilient. The Kings overcame a 3-0 series deficit in round one against San Jose before slaying Anaheim the following round despite once trailing 3-2. Now, Los Angeles has the upper hand, as they’ll look to take a commanding 3-0 lead on the Rangers’ home ice. If New York is to avoid sinking into oblivion, it will be up to Lundqvist to keep them afloat.

henrik-Lundqvist2“At the end of the day, we’ve got to take care of business, and that’s what we’re going to do,” said Rangers’ coach Alain Vigneault. For Lundqvist, business is that of a monarch, ruling over all with a steady glove hand. His success determines that of the Rangers, who rode their Swedish sensation past Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Montreal. More production out of Brad Richards and Rick Nash would be optimal. But, it’s the play of Lundqvist between the pipes that keeps the oil burning in New York.

For the Kings, tonight could be the beginning of a coronation. For the Rangers, this is the evening of their reckoning. It’s do or die in Manhattan. A loss, and this once promising playoff chariot evaporates into a pumpkin. A win, and Henrik Lundqvist will once again be king; if only for a day.

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