Jun 1, 2014, 12:55 PM EDT
These last few years haven’t been easy for New York Rangers defenseman Marc Staal. From dealing with a serious concussion to a scary eye injury, he’s had to work hard just to keep his career on track. He was finally able to turn a corner in 2013-14 by playing in 72 regular season games and another 20 in the playoffs.
He might not be the flashiest of players, but he’s been logging big minutes in the Rangers postseason run. Now he’s reached the Stanley Cup Final for the first time in his career.
Raising the Cup is something his brothers Eric and Jordan Staal were able to do early in their careers with the 2006 Carolina Hurricanes and 2009 Pittsburgh Penguins respectively. Marc was there when his siblings got their time with the Cup and even took some pictures with it, but per NHL tradition, he avoided touching it. Just four more wins and that will change.
“We all want to see him get it done,” Eric Staal told Newsday. “What he’s gone through the past few years, not just physically but mentally, it’s great to see him not just playing for a Cup but being such a big part of it for them.”
If Marc and the Rangers manage to pull it off, then they will become the first trio of brothers to individually win the Stanley Cup as players. The Sutter brothers are the closest equivalent as Duane, Brent, and Darryl have each won the Cup, but Darryl accomplished that feat as a coach, not a player.
Marc’s close to making it happen, but he knows it’s far from a lock. The Los Angeles Kings and Chicago Blackhawks will play in Game 7 of the Western Conference Final tonight. The winner of that game is sure to be a tough opponent for the Rangers.
- After not seeing ‘eye-to-eye’ with Carlyle, Reimer will compete for No. 1 gig 3
- Two down, one to go: Wings ink Tatar to three-year, $8.25M deal 10
- Cashing in: Rangers sign Brassard to five-year, $25 million deal 61
- Subban not eager to discuss contract talks 33
- Leafs re-sign Reimer — two years, $4.6 million 22
- Gorges still can’t explain falling out of favor in Montreal 13
- Eller, Habs agree to four-year, $14 million contract 10
- Cory Sarich hospitalized following cycling accident, expects ‘full recovery’ 7
- Stamkos shrugs off talk of LeBron-like homecoming to Toronto in 2016 31
- Avs and O’Reilly agree on two-year deal, but questions remain 45
- NBC Sports to air over 100 NHL regular-season games in 2014-15 (69)
- Vanek connected to federal gambling investigation (61)
- Cashing in: Rangers sign Brassard to five-year, $25 million deal (61)
- Report: O’Reilly wants $6.7M deal, Avs counter at $5.5M (58)
- Return that toaster: Ovechkin-Kirilenko engagement broken off (54)