Emotional Rangers Prepare For Agitated Canadiens
There were the Rangers, one by one lending their support to Martin St. Louis and his family. In what has become a prevalent story surrounding the team this post-season, the Rangers help Marty say goodbye to his mother on Sunday.
Alain Vigneault, who’s eyes were still filled with tears said, “He’s a much better man than I am to be able to do something like that. But I think what he’s doing and his family … is doing is they’re moving on through our team. The fact that we’re still playing is enabling them to cope and handle this challenging situation.”
-NYDN, Pat Leonard
Close friend and current Ranger, Brad Richard’s also had glowing words for Marty’s courage. “Incredible; Marty spoke for about 20 minutes, telling stories about his mom, and he spoke in French and English, alternating between the two languages every three sentences or so,” Richards said. “It was perfect. It was so touching. It’s just part of who he is and what makes him such a special person.”
–NYPOST, Larry Brooks
While many people believe that this tragedy has carried the Rangers since RD2- GM5, I disagree and take offense. Overshadowed in the playoffs, was a closed door meeting after game 4’s catastrophic performance. The Rangers were going to be better in game 5 regardless, they were simply extra motivated due to Marty’s decision to play. Game 6 was on Mother’s day and they rode the emotional lift provided by St. Louis opening game score. However, by game 7, it was all pure guts and determination to win a series.
This Rangers team can play. Simply put, from the goal on out, this team is talented and competes. NY was one of the league’s hottest teams in the second half, amassing a 29-13-4 record from 12/22 on. Thinking that Marty’s tragedy is the only thing carrying the Rangers is false and ludicrous.
The Canadiens now feel they have their own hockey equivalent for motivation in the potential injury to Carey Price. Montreal’s superstar net minder is questionable for game 2, after what the entire team felt was an “accidentally on purpose” collision by Rangers’ forward Chris Kreider. The Habs will come out and rally, regardless if Price is in net or not.
Game 2’s biggest question for the Rangers is how will they respond after a very emotionally draining Sunday. Will they have their own letdown? Or will the Rangers rally one more time to honor the memory of France St. Louis? Emotions will run high, but it will be the team that stays out of the box and handles momentum swings that will prevail in game 2.
The Rangers will continue their dominating play and hand the Canadiens a 3-0 loss.
*Stay with us today as we cover the post-practice buzz from both side.
-Editor’s Note: Out of respect for the St. Louis family, FT Rangers Magazine refuses to post pictures from the funeral. We believe in a person’s right to a private life. Just because they get paid millions to play a sport, doesn’t entitle anyone else to have access to it. For those that choose to post it, we understand. This is simply our position.