HBO’s 24/7 Flyers/Rangers: Road to the NHL Winter Classic debuts tomorrow night and based on early reviews from his teammates, New York Rangers defenseman Dan Girardi could be in line for an Emmy.
“I think he’s first star, for sure,” said Michael Del Zotto, Girardi’s dressing room neighbor. “I think ‘G’ gets the Broadway hat for HBO.”
[Note: The Broadway Hat is a black fedora the Rangers brought back from the NHL Premiere series in Europe, awarded to the standout performer after every victory. It’s kind of like the hard hat Washington awarded last season…only less red. And hard. That’s what she said.]
Goalie Henrik Lundqvist also picked Girardi to be a breakout star.
“If I had to pick one guy to follow, he’s it,” Lundqvist said. “I don’t know how many interesting things he does, but he says a lot of funny things.”
Girardi acknowledged he could be 24/7’s scene stealer.
“I like to do drive-by chirps and little comments here and there, just to keep guys honest,” Girardi told the New York Daily News. “I don’t know how much [fans] are going to see of that. I don’t know how much is clean and how much is dirty, so I don’t know how the hell that’s gonna go.
“But it’s just part of who I am. I get that from my dad – he’s the king of one-liners at home. I had to keep it going in the family.”
Add Girardi to the list of compelling characters. Aside from the obvious guys — Sean Avery, Chris Pronger, John Tortorella, Ilya Bryzgalov — you’ve also got stories that came out of nowhere, like Artem “Shooter” Anisimov and Brandon Prust,
who’s suddenly one of the NHL’s most active fighters. (Which I’m sure has nothing to do with HBO cameras being present. Nothing at all…)
You’ve also got the rambunctious Philly youngsters (Zac Rinaldo, Wayne Simmonds), the emergence of Claude Giroux, Jaromir Jagr’s stirring comeback season, the Marc Staal situation and the Brandon Dubinsky-Jody Shelley war of words.
In conclusion, I am looking forward to tomorrow night.