The night they hand out the Steven McDonald extra effort award is always one of my favorite nights of the year. Growing up, my favorite player was never the best player – it was always the player that did the shit that most players don’t want to do. If you look at the jerseys I’ve collected, how many of you know someone who owns a Jed Ortmeyer one? People forget Messier said he’d be a future captain.
This award goes to the player who “Goes above and beyond the call of duty” and last night, Ryan Lindgren was recognized.
And then he immediately took a high stick to the face.
And at the end of the game decided to block a shot with his face, only to return a few minutes later.
How’d he feel about this?
Yup, that’s right. The Rangers are already fully locked into the playoffs and 55 is going down to block a shot in a meaningless game because there is no off switch with him. Whenever I have kids, and if they want to play hockey, I will show them this clip.
You cannot teach compete level. Some players just want it more than others and you’d be hard pressed to find someone who goes to battle like Lindgren.
We’ve seen it time and time again by the way – the moment 55 leaves the lineup the Rangers immediately forget how to play defense. He is a calming force on the back end and consistently shuts down the opponents top players. If you think about it, how many egregious (shoutout to the Pierre McGuire vocal) turnovers have you seen 55 give up in his tenure with the Rangers?
Anyways, long story short – this was so well deserved and Lindgren makes me proud to root and cheer on the red, white and blue. Honestly, the best thing Rick Nash ever did for the Rangers was go to Boston. I’ll take that trade any day of the week.