Sam Rosen has called Rangers games for 30 years on MSG Network. He is famous for his ” … and this one will last a lifetime!” call of the Rangers’ 1994 Stanley Cup championship.
Rosen, a New City resident, will provide diary entries throughout this year’s Stanley Cup Final.
I’m a disciple of Yogi Berra. “It ain’t over ’til it’s over.”
Thank God for Yogi. And you know what’s really changed my thinking in recent years? Ever since the Red Sox came from 0-3 behind in 2004 in the American League Championship Series and did it to the Yankees, I’ve started to think that this can be done.
I used to think it was impossible, the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs and 1975 Islanders notwithstanding. Now we’ve seen it happen with the Red Sox, we’ve seen it happen this year with the L.A. Kings against the San Jose Sharks. So it’s not impossible. It’s improbable, but not impossible.
For the Rangers I think there is something that has to come into play in Game 4, and that is: pride. They have to have the pride to dig down and not let the Kings take them out in four straight. They’ve got to protect their house. They’ve got to win at home, give something for their fans to latch onto, show the fans that they’re not a four-straight out, they’re going to find a way to win and keep the hope alive and keep this series going.
They may not win, and in all likelihood they won’t, but they’ve got to give their fans something to hook onto.
And it starts with Hank. Henrik Lundqvist is the key. He’s got to come out with a determination that nothing is going to get by him. What I really liked was seeing him out on the ice (Tuesday) working on deflections. An optional practice, all the players were dejected, and he was out there working on his game.
That was a great sign. He is a leader of this team, he’s a man they count on and he needs to come out with a great effort. He did it in Game 5 against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Down three games to one, in Pittsburgh, he came out with a terrific effort – the entire team came out with a terrific effort – and kept that series alive and went on to come back and win that series. I think that’s something the Rangers can latch onto. That’s something recent, to give them the belief that they’re good enough to do this.
Are the L.A. Kings tough? Yes. Are they unbeatable? No. They lost three in a row in the opening-round series to the Sharks. They lost three in a row to the Anaheim Ducks in the middle of the second-round series, and they lost two straight to Chicago and almost three straight.
They’re a very good team, they’re big, they’re strong, they’re confident, but the Rangers have shown they can play with them, play at that level. They could have won both games in L.A., probably should have won Game 2, but they didn’t. Now they’ve got to find a way to win and it starts with Lundqvist, but it carries to the rest of the team.
Above all, give those fans some hope and belief early on, get them behind the team and go from there.
Photo above, by Getty Images.
Photo of Sam Rosen by Rebecca Taylor/MSG photos.