Martin St. Louis will play on Sunday after returning from Montreal following the death of his mother. Credit: Getty Images
This Mother's Day took on additional significance for the Rangers following the sudden death of Martin St. Louis' mother, France, who passed away following a heart attack Thursday.
St. Louis flew to Montreal immediately after the Game 5 win, and will have his father Edmund and sister Isabelle in the Garden for Sunday's game.
"It's an emotional day for [St. Louis], for everybody," Brad Richards said. "You guys, us, it all brings the thought of calling your mom, talking to your mom, if they're still alive. It's emotional for everybody. It doesn't matter who you are. That's way beyond hockey. It'll be special if Marty gets to bring his family in and hopefully get a big win for them and her on Mother's Day."
Vigneault confident of win
While it was not Mark Messier guaranteeing a win over the Devils in Game 6 of the 1994 Eastern Conference final, head coach Alain Vigneault left no doubt how he felt about his team heading into a win-or-go-home game.
"I'm confident in my team," Vigneault said when he met with reporters after the Rangers' morning skate at the Garden.
The Rangers trail the Penguins 3-2 in the best-of-seven Metropolitan Division finals, but forced Game 6 with a 5-1 win Friday at CONSOL Energy Center. The Rangers have never beaten the Penguins in a playoff series, and have never won a best-of-seven series after trailing 3-1.
When asked what his message to the team was, Vigneault said he did not think he had to stress the importance of the game.
"I'm pretty sure you guys [in the media] did a pretty good job of talking to [the players] about that, so I don't think I need to reinforce that," Vigneault said. "I'm sure everybody is well aware of what's at stake. [Either] we continue to play or we don't play. So that's on the line. I don't think you need to focus on that. I think you need to focus on what you need to do on the ice. Pay real close attention to the details that make you successful, and that's what we're going to do.
"They don't need to hear from me, 'Guys, you need to play really well. This is our last game.' They know. I'm sure you guys brought that up. I don't need to reinforce that. They know we're down by a game and that if we don't win tonight, it's over."
The NHL announced Boston left wing Shawn Thornton was fined $2,820.52 for unsportsmanlike conduct in the third period of the Bruins' 4-2 win in Game 5 over the Canadiens Saturday night.
While sitting on the bench, Thornton squirted a bottle of water at Montreal defenseman P.K. Subban, who skated by. Following the game, Subban told reporters he "couldn't even see the last minute and a half out there, so I was pretty upset."
Boston leads the best-of-seven Atlantic Division finals 3-2. Game 6 is set for Monday at the Bell Centre in Montreal.
Follow Rangers beat writer Denis Gorman on Twitter@DenisGorman.