If you woke up Sunday morning and was still angry over game
2 of the Stanley Cup Finals and how the non-call on Dwight King hang on to that
anger for a while longer. In fact let
that anger simmer inside and bring it with you Monday night when the New York
Rangers take home ice for game 3.
Be angry that there are those who are still calling the
Rangers the “huge underdogs” in this series. Really? The Rangers who have led
both games while the Los Angeles Kings have needed overtime wins to escape with
their 2-0 series lead. Please take that underdog label and stick it over at NHL
HQ as the Rangers have more than proven that they are nobody’s underdog.
It is frustrating that once again the outcome of a game is
affected by the always consistently inconsistent officiating of the NHL
referees. Running over Henrik Lundqvist isn’t a penalty unless he is just about
slaughtered in the first overtime. It is goalie interference if Benoit Pouliot
runs collides with King’s goalie Jonathan Quick (right call as Pouliot made no
effort to avoid contact).
The two referee system was supposed to improve the way the
game was called but instead what it has done is show just how screwed up the NHL’s
level of officiating really is. What is really sad is having to listen to Gary
Bettman defend it as the best hockey officiating in the world when it really
To have a game, a championship finals be impacted by one bad
call or in this case non-call says a lot about the NHL and none of it is good.
For those who want to say that it isn’t as big a deal as this is making it out
to be then let us go back to the moment this happened.
It is 1:58 into the 3rd period, the Staples
Center is mostly quiet because their team is trailing by 2 goals. If you make
the call for goalie interference then the Rangers are still up by 2 goals, they
are about to go on a power play, the Staples Center is booing like heck but
most of all; the Rangers are still pretty much carrying the momentum of this
Please do not tell me this is not a game-changer because the
game up to that point was pretty much an evenly matched game. Instead, the
Kings pulled to within one goal, the crowd is back involved and loud with the
game and now the Kings are the ones with momentum.
And if you are a Kings fans then yes Rick Nash was guilty of
a Sidney Crosby-like dive and should have been the one who got penalized.
Diving sucks no matter which player or team is guilty of doing it.
I will though say this now; this series is not over and I
don’t give a rat what the record book says about teams trailing 0-2. The
Rangers have proven that their speed game is something the Kings are having trouble
Those big bad Kings are almost being matched hit for hit by
the Rangers. Heck ask the Kings who have been on the receiving end of a Mats
Zuccarello hit what it feels like as the “Hobbit” is going from one end of the
ice to the other looking for people to hit. I wonder what the former coach is
thinking about Zuccarello’s ability to play a physical game.
Not to mention that is it hard to really complain about the
game the Rangers played as yes it would have been nice to have finished on some
of those chances. At the same time those chances are there for the taking as
the Kings don’t have an answer for Kreider.
So Monday things will be different as now it is the turn of
the Ranger fans to bring the noise. They don’t need cheap gimmicks like an air
horn to announce a goal and they don’t have to be asked to make noise.
Game 3 is the one everyone always calls the pivotal one as a
Ranger win and this series is very far from over.