Rangers-Henrik Lundqvist: John Tortorella said on Sunday that playoff elimination games---such as Sunday's Game Six and tonight's Game Seven---are where players cement their legacies. This is particularly true for great players, like Lundqvist. The Rangers goaltender has accomplished so much already in his career---league-best numbers, an Olympic Gold Medal, a Vezina Trophy, five Vezina finalist nominations, All-Star Game selections---but he hungers for the Stanley Cup. And his performances in winning three elimination games a year ago, and his remarkable performance in shutting out Washington by the narrowest of 1-0 margins yesterday, speak to that drive Lundqvist has, not to mention his skill and ability. Trying to keep their season alive with a Game Seven win on the road this evening, the Rangers will lean heavily on their best player---one whom Mats Zuccarello referred to Sunday as "the best in the world"---and he will need to be at his best, knowing that Washington will play much desperation and passion in front of their home fans, with their season on the line, as well. It is hard to believe that any Rangers fan would want anyone other than Lundqvist as their last line of defense tonight.
Capitals-Alex Ovechkin: Showing increased maturity, Ovechkin has not sulked nor stopped working his tail off despite being thwarted time and again by Henrik Lundqvist in this series. Almost incredibly Ovechkin has been held without a point in four straight games, and he has totaled just one goal and one assist in six games, so far, in this series, despite his passionate effort and world-class level of play. Lundqvist has beaten Ovechkin repeatedly one-on-one, though much credit belongs to the defense pairing of Dan Girardi and Ryan McDonagh, too, for their incredibly dogged work against the reigning Rocket Richard Trophy winner. Ovechkin has recorded 29 shots on goal in this series---more than any other player---and has attempted far more which were blocked or cranked wide of the mark by the talented Russian. Ovechkin does not seem frustrated---something he might have clearly showed in the past given the same circumstances---and that bodes well for a strong performance in Game Seven from this Hart Trophy finalist.