By Ellen Wulfhorst
NEW YORK (Reuters) - From potentially embarrassing television appearances to lowly rice cakes, the traditional official bets flew across the country on Wednesday as the New York Rangers and Los Angeles Kings prepared to face off in the NHL's Stanley Cup Finals.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the loser of their friendly wager would have to sing on ABC Television's late-night "Jimmy Kimmel Live," according to a statement from de Blasio's office.
If New York wins, Garcetti will help perform "New York, New York," made famous by legendary crooner Frank Sinatra. If Los Angeles wins, de Blasio will help perform Randy Newman's "I Love L.A."
The first game of the National Hockey League's best-of-seven championship series was scheduled for Wednesday night in Los Angeles.
On the gubernatorial front, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that if Los Angeles wins, he will send California's Governor Jerry Brown a gift basket of local products and a "hat trick," hockey puck to commemorate his state's three on-time budgets in a row.
If the Rangers win, Brown will send Cuomo a book on California state history and lightly salted organic brown rice cakes, according to Cuomo's office.
The governors' wager was quickly met with criticism, as an ice hockey columnist on Yahoo Sports called it "the lamest governors' bet ever."
News website The Wire lamented that the bet was particularly uninspired.
"It's as if aides in each office were reluctantly told at lunch today to hash out terms for a wager with whatever they could find lying around the office. 'Oh, I brought rice cakes for lunch, will that work?,'" wrote The Wire.
Meanwhile, in Washington, U.S. Senators Barbara Boxer of California and Charles Schumer of New York made more typical bets.
Boxer wagered beer from a Los Angeles-based brewery and local hot dogs, while Schumer wagered a case of Brooklyn-made beer and soft pretzels from a New York City food cart.
The Kings won the Stanley Cup just two years ago, while the Rangers have not won professional ice hockey's top prize since 1994.
(Editing by G Crosse)