Saturday, March 19, 2011

Brandon Prust Defines What It Means To Be A Ranger (w/Moen fight video)

For many teams in the NHL the guy that keys the rest of the team is their best player as he sets the tone for the type of team they will be.  That is not the case for the New York Rangers.  The guy who sets the tone for the Rangers is Brandon Prust.  With that being the case it was a surprise to few that last night in a crucial game it was Prust who dropped the gloves with Travis Moen one second into the game. The last thing on his mind in that moment was how bad his shoulder is and that epitomizes the way he plays.  That fight sent a charge through Madison Square Garden that the Rangers carried through to their best period of the season as they scored five on their way to securing two huge points in their playoff quest. 

All season Prust has added his warrior stamp to this young Rangers team and defined the kind of mental and physical toughness that allows them to be in the playoffs right now.  Based on pure talent this team should not be a playoff team.  Based on heart and determination they could be Stanley Cup Champions and none define that more than Prust.

No matter how many different injuries he has at any given time, the number of “maintenance days” he has to take off practice or any of the rest you can bet your last dollar that when they drop the puck to start a Rangers’ game he will be in uniform. Not only will he be out there, but he will work as hard or harder than anyone else on the ice and toss his beaten body around with reckless abandon if it will help his team win.  That has become the definition of this team and what it means to be a New York Ranger.

It is why as much as Prust does to defend his teammates every one of them would go to battle for him and frankly I wish more of them did to give him a break from it.  While other teams have their best player as the definition of how they play, the New York Rangers have Brandon Prust leading that charge and all of us will follow him wherever he leads because he defines the slogan the Rangers love to push, "I am a Ranger."