Best of NHL Playoffs for May 2: Ryan McDonagh has more stamina than you
The performance of the playoffs to this point has to be New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh playing nearly 54 minutes during Game 3 on Wednesday.
Two years ago the New York Rangers had a bad contract on their roster that was taking up way too much salary cap space, and they had to get rid of it. That contract belonged to forward Scott Gomez, and it was considered to be one of the most untradeable contracts in the NHL.
Not only did they somehow find a team that was willing to take the five years and $35 million remaining on his deal at the time, they found a team (Montreal) that was also willing to give up a young, pretty darn good player.
That play turned out to be defenseman Ryan McDonagh, and on Wednesday night he put together a performance that had to leave you exhausted just watching it. When all was said and done in the Rangers 2-1 triple overtime win, McDonagh had played a total of 53 minutes and 21 seconds.
That is nearly a full games worth of minutes. It was 50 minutes more than Rangers defenseman Stu Bickel played, as he logged just three minutes of ice time, with his final shift coming at the 4:18 mark of the second period. The only other player involved in the game that was even remotely close to McDonagh in terms of playing time was fellow Rangers defenseman Marc Staal with just over 49 minutes. Nobody else, for either team, played more than 45 minutes.
Along with the marathon ice-time, McDonagh also blocked a game-high eight shots, was credited with four hits, had four shots on goal, and was on the receiving end of a thunderous hit from Washington's Matt Hendricks. He basically played an entire game by himself. In one night. Somebody give that man some fluids and carbs. Right now. And then give him the day off on Thursday.
As for the rest of the best on Wednesday...
A lot of things happened here for Nashville on its second goal of the night.
The great defensive play by Martin Erat to force the turnover, Sergei Kostitsyn for some reason passing to Mike Fisher when Kostitsyn himself was wide open and in front of the net, and then Fisher finding a way to get the puck to bounce in off of a Coyotes defender. A lot of crazy stuff happening in the blink of an eye, but still good enough to be our goal of the night.
We already showed you the Nashville Predators ice girl that was given the assignment of cleaning up the catfish with her bare hands on Wednesday night, and that also led to our Tweet of the night. It comes from Seth Rohrabaugh of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette...
You know a woman who can ice skate and is willing to pick up a dead fish with her bare hands... marry her.— Seth Rorabaugh (@emptynetters) May 3, 2012
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