Tampa, Florida – There can be a fair amount of silk in a Rangers game and a fair amount of sparkle surrounding a Broadway hockey team. But the pool, two games away from the Stanley Cup Final, is full of iron and fibre.
And no one embodies those qualities better than the blackest and bluest shirt of them all. That, of course, is the indestructible Ryan Lindgren, who will continue to appear in Whac-A-Mole no matter how hard and often he conquests a hammer.
“He’s definitely a warrior,” Tyler Mott said of Lindgren on Saturday, while sitting next to the defender at the club’s press conference. “He doesn’t like the spotlight, he doesn’t like me talking about him sitting next to him up here.
“But we have a lot of guys fighting in many different ways to do different things, some more visible than others. The way Lindy shows, makes you proud to be a teammate for someone like this who goes into battle.
“Maybe he is not one hundred percent every night, but he does everything for the team. That is the mentality.”
blues They will go for their third win in a row Against Lightning, the two-time defending champion, who took a few eight times in the park in games 1 and 2. Rangers outplayed the Lightning, outplayed the goal post, and fired the Lightning.
There is a clear commitment to playing in difficult areas and competing for every loose puck. Rangers are keeping the pressure of checking foreclosures on a consistent basis for the first time almost since October. Attackers break their backs to put pressure on the opponent’s puck holders. For the first time, the blue jerseys really press the disc all over the ice.
That, and Igor Shesterkin, is the reason why the Rangers outperformed Lightning 8-2 in five-to-five in the park and beat Carolina and Tampa Bay 19-10 with full and equal power in the past two rounds.
“There is definitely an increase in the comeback and the back-review,” said coach Gerard Gallant. “[Tampa Bay] He pushes the disc like any team in the league, so I talked about that last night, so you do it in the shooting lanes, block more shots, and do the little things.
“In game time, the little things pay off big for your team and I think we’re doing a good job on that.”
Lindgren has made a career in doing what may seem small, but has a huge impact. He and friend Adam Fox only scored three goals against five-to-five during the tournament while he was a plus-eight in this division. To put that in context, the K’Andre Miller-Jacob Trouba tandem was in the running for 13-for and 12-for-plus-one.
Of course, Lindgren didn’t play in games 3 and 4 of the first round in Pittsburgh, when the Penguins finished seventh in those back-to-back contests. Cause or effect? He was sidelined due to a lower body injury he sustained or aggravated in the opening triple overtime game against the Penguins and did not return until game five.
Twice during the series against the Hurricanes, Lindgren left the seat to return to the room. came back twice. Was anyone surprised?
“There is definitely a fight sometimes and you do everything in your power to get back out there. I can’t say enough about [head athletic trainer] “Jim Ramsey and his team and how much they have helped and prepared you to get back there,” said Lindgren. “It’s a group of guys fighting through things.
“It’s a hockey game. You want to be there to help the team and fight through whatever you can.”
Rangers acquired the rights to Lindgren from the Bruins at the 2018 deadline in a Rick Nash deal. Lindgren has been praised for his character and work and leadership ethic. Check, check, check. The room seemed to be filled with similar athletes responding for a moment.
“I kind of thought you were going to get beaten up and get some bumps and bruises along the way,” Lindgren said. “That’s kind of the way I like to play, being physical and strong knowing you’re going to have to fight through things. It’s just a hockey match.
“You’re just doing everything you can to rest, heal and get back there. But I’m feeling better and better. Again, I can’t say enough about Jim Ramsey and how much it helped you get back there.”
Gallant spoke about how expecting Lindgren to continue regardless of medical conditions became almost automatic for him. The coach was asked what the 24-year-old defender would need to play through physical challenges.
“It’s the NHL. Galant said. “He wants to win.”