LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 06: Adam Henrique #14 of the New Jersey Devils scores a goal over goaltender Jonathan Quick #32 of the Los Angeles Kings in the third period of Game Four of the 2012 Stanley Cup Final at Staples Center on June 6, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Adam Henrique has been downright dirty in the 2012 NHL Playoffs. If you have been watching the New Jersey Devils advance to the Stanley Cup Final, you had to have seen Henrique score at opportune moments. He may only have 4 goals and 8 assists, but those were (mostly) series defining points. After the jump I'll cover just how potent Adam Henrique has been this postseason.
Henrique has always been a fantastic playoff player. When he played for the Windsor Spitfires, he averaged 1.19 points per game in the playoffs. When playing for the Memorial Cup, Henrique averaged 1.70 points per game. Henrique knows how to turn on a whole new level when the pressure comes on. Henrique has also played on a team that rallied and won four games in a row in the OHL playoffs, the 2009-2010 Windsor Spitfires. (He scored 6 goals in those four games). Some will argue he played alongside Taylor Hall, who helped bump his point totals up. However, Devils' fans would say, what now?
First NHL Playoffs:
In last night's win, Henrique took a somewhat ugly pass by David Clarkson, kicked it to his stick and rifled it, top shelf, past the seemingly-impossible-to-score-on Jonathan Quick. No matter who you cheer for, that goal was something else. Much like Anze Kopitar's bullet in game 3. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skfYqEjuN_k)
Mr. Henrique also came through with a goal in another high pressure situation. Game seven in the first round versus the Florida Panthers. Henrique scored in regulation to help the Devils push the game to overtime. Not only did he score in a game seven once, but he scored in the second overtime to push the Devils into the second round for the first time in years.
Then, in game five against the Philadelphia Flyers, Henrique put up 2 assists to help the Devils advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals.
If all this wasn't enough, Henrique netted the overtime winner in game six against the New York Rangers to send the Devils to the Stanley Cup Finals.
I don't generally believe in "clutch" athletes. Henrique seems to break this disbelief. Finally, there is hardly any commotion about Adam Henrique outside the Devils' fans. You would think there would be constant talk about this for a player who didn't make the team out of training camp. Yet again, we can't count on the media to be unbiased... *ahem* NBC.
Can we expect Henrique to propel the Devils to defeat the Los Angeles Kings in seven? Only Henrique knows if he's capable of that, and I don't have his number to ask him.