WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 03: The New York Rangers celebrate after Marian Gaborik #10 scored the game winning goal in the third overtime period against the Washington Capitals in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Semifinals during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Verizon Center on May 3, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
- Wow. Just wow. I've never seen a triple overtime game before, and I'm betting most of you guys haven't either. What a game. Then again, it's not a game you appreciate until it's over. I got multiple texts from friends during the game asking me how much fun this game was. My response: "This isn't fun, I'm miserable." And I was, until ...
- In games like this you sometimes find yourself getting greedy. Thoughts like, "Oh man, how cool would it be if Chris Kreider score the game winning goal" shoot through your head. You quickly dispose of the thought. You just want a goal from anyone (who is a New York Rangers player obviously). You don't care how it goes in, what leads up to it, you just want that red light going off and your team's bench exploding. In the end, the Rangers got the best of both worlds. I don't think Marian Gaborik has been bad at all, but he's been snake bitten for sure. Well, that was one hell of a way to break out of a slump. Easily the most memorable goal of his career, and exactly what he needs to get going.
Join me after the jump for more.
- Remember a week or so ago when the Rangers will still playing the Ottawa Senators? I wrote about how you need to go through these gut-check moments throughout the playoffs to get to the Stanley Cup. The fact of the matter is you don't win the Stanley Cup, you earn it.
- Doc had a great line during the broadcast, "They go through all this for a ring too big to wear and a trophy you can't keep, but don't tell them it's not worth it." Truer words have never been spoken.
- Speaking of earning it, don't you just swell with pride when you think about Ryan Callahan? I still stand by the fact that he's the best captain in the NHL. He played over 40 minutes last night, and shift after shift he laid hits and blocked shots. He saved this game twice in OT, and both times were thanks to ridiculous blocks that he had no business making. He also sored the Rangers' first goal. I would go to war with Callahan seven days a week and twice on Sunday.
- Ryan McDonagh is a hero. He played over 50 minutes, and if the game would have gone on he would have played a full game of hockey easily. He got lit up in the first overtime, bounced back up and had a great game. This kid is a special player, a really special player, in fact, who still is underrated despite all the media attention. What a game from him. What a season from him.
- I want to give props to McDonagh, Dan Girardi, Michael Del Zotto, Marc Staal, Callahan and Brian Boyle. Throw in every other guy who played hurt. Boyle got hit with a shot in the face, he didn't miss a shift. Girardi was almost decapitated by Henrik Lundqvist. He only missed as much time as the doctors needed to stop the bleeding. Don't tell me this team doesn't want to win. These are the little things that have to happen to win the Cup. You earn it.
- Lundqvist was remarkable. He's always been a steady ship during a storm, but he was something else Wednesday night. Save after save after save and each one was better than the rest. The Capitals were buzzing early, and Lundqvist was there to shut them down. They had their moments in OT (including a couple of posts) and Lundqvist was there too.
- I thought Kreider played a good game. I honestly thought he was average in regulation and then stepped up big time in the overtimes. He showed his youth in the third where he didn't go wide on a two-on-one, tried a tough pass and had it broken up. He'll learn those things with experience, but he was one of the Rangers better players in OT. The simple fact is that when he is on the ice good things happen. They just do.
- That game, by the way, is the reason the Rangers wanted Brad Richards so bad. It seems like the tougher the situation, the more pressure packed a game is he comes up bigger than everyone else. What a pass to Gaborik, I mean what a pass.
- I'll leave you with this question: Who would you give the Broadway Hat to? I honestly don't know. Lundqvist, Gaborik, McDonagh, Girardi, Callahan, Richards? The choices are endless.