When it comes to professional sports, it’s really hard to feel bad for the athletes that play them.
These guys get to play a game and make a ton of money doing something that normal people would do for free. With money comes lots of fame, fortune, sponsorships, and admiration from millions of people.
Professional athletes also get to travel the country and all over the world and not have to pay for any of it. Could you imagine how much it would cost a normal person to go to all of these places?
With all of that said, however, there is one professional athlete that people should feel badly for. Yes, this particular player has had a ton of success in his sport, but nevertheless, there are some things that one can’t help but look at and feel some kind of sympathy for this guy.
I am talking about New York Rangers’ future Hockey Hall of Fame netminder Henrik Lundqvist. I am certainly well aware that in New York, Lundqvist is a superhero, but it can be said that he could be even more had things gone the way he wanted them too.
The main reason why I feel badly is that he has yet to win the Stanley Cup. In hockey, every player dreams about winning the Cup and the feelings that come with it such as true happiness, excitement, relief, and much, much more.
Not only has Lundqvist never won hockey’s Holy Grail, but it appears that he never will. What makes matters worse is that he had a few opportunities to make it happen:
– Lost in the Eastern Conference Finals in six games to the New Jersey Devils in 2012
– Lost in the Stanley Cup Final in five games to the Los Angeles Kings in 2014
– Lost in the Eastern Conference Finals in seven games to the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2015
Those were three glorious opportunities for the “King” and his teammates to get the job done and they just could not do it. Lundqvist was outstanding in each of the above mentioned playoff years, but he has nothing to show for his heroic efforts.
Another reason I feel badly for Henrik is that since 2015, the Blueshirts have not come close to winning the Cup. Sure, they made the playoffs in both 2016 and 2017, but they lost in the first round in 2016 to the Pittsburgh Penguins and lost in 2017 in the second round to the Ottawa Senators.
The club did not make the playoffs last season and are not going to make them this season despite the fact that Lundqvist was an All-Star both last year and this year. This will be the first time in Henrik’s career that the team missed the postseason in back-to-back years.
This all goes to show you that despite everything that Lundqvist has done and accomplished with and for this franchise, he does not have the one thing that every hockey player cherishes the most. Sure, he may have a Vezina Trophy as the league’s top goaltender, have well over 400 wins, several All-Star game appearances, etc., but in the end, none of these mean much to Henrik without winning the Cup.
I feel awful for Lundqvist, folks. If you’re a true blue fan like me, you should feel badly as well.
*Photo: New York Daily News