Professional sport is a job, but in many ways, very different from others. Your teammates are more than colleagues. you work together, but you also socialize together, travel together, practically (and sometimes even literally) live together. For half of the season, you share every meal and almost every minute between the office and the office. Even for the second half of the season, especially hockey, the word "home" is on the other side of the world. where you really come from, your teammates are therefore the only constants.
Except that they are often not very constant. Professional sports also differ from the real world in that your colleagues, your friends-May be sent to live and work in another city in no time. That's when they try to tell you "it's a business".
After losing 6 to 5 overtime to the Capitals in New York on Sunday, Rangers lifetime player Henrik Lundqvist was questioned about Mats Zuccarello, who the previous night had been traded to Dallas for a pair of choices. Zuccarello and Lundqvist have been teammates since 2010, probably longer than you know many close friends.
"It's hard … a good friend … sorry … I can not do it." Damn, Hank.
These are and will continue to be difficult days for Lundqvist. For the second time in a row, the Rangers are undressed and sold for spare parts: it was last year, Ryan McDonagh, Miller JT, Rick Nash and Michael Grabner, while Kevin Hayes and Adam McQuaid should be moved today.
Lundqvist has been a ranger since 2005, so he has had some ups and downs, but probably none as existential as this one. The ongoing reconstruction is still at the stage of stockpiling, leaving little reason to believe that New York will be a competitor in the coming years. This schedule is relevant to Lundqvist, who turns 37 next weekend and has the worst numbers of his career. He signed until 2021, with a non-movement clause, but it is impossible to consider that his competition windows and those of the Rangers are open again at the same time. Lundqvist is an indisputable Hall-of-Famer, but this cut so difficult to obtain, if it exists in its future, does not exist in New York.
I do not know if or how much it weighs, but it's another difference between professional sports and normal work: each year, players from 30 teams fail. It simply means that athletes must measure their professional and personal growth differently than at championships. It's horribly cliché, but it's a cliché because it's true: sometimes victories are the friendships you make on the way.