Originally written on Around The Rink  |  Last updated 11/16/14
Nhl_awards_presentation_b073

Left to right: Mark Messier's famous guarantee; Stefan Matteau's Game 7 OT Winner from 1994; Devils goalie from then and now, Martin Brodeur

The signs and similarities are impossible to ignore. Eighteen years have passed, but as they were in the ’94 Eastern Conference Final, the New York Rangers are the #1 seed in the 2012 version. And they are again facing the New Jersey Devils. And again, after five games, just as it was in 1994, the Devils hold a 3-2 series lead with a chance to win it on home ice in Game 6, despite the fact that the Rangers held a 2-1 series lead after three games…just like in 1994. Heck, even Martin Brodeur, who netminded that ’94 Devils team, is still the goalie for the 2012 incarnation of New Jersey.

However, unlike the 1994 team, but very much like today’s let-their-play-on-the-ice-speak-for –itself New York Rangers, there are no bold guarantees of a Game 6 win from the 2012 Rangers, a win that evened the series back in 1994 and would do the same today for a Rangers team facing elimination. 18 years ago, Rangers captain Mark Messier famously guaranteed “we’ll win tonight”, a quote that itself has become one of the most famous guarantees in hockey history, as it was splashed across New York City newspapers before game day, and became fulfilled when Messier scored a hat trick to give the Rangers a 4-2 win over the Devils, evening their series at 3; a series that the Rangers would go on to win in seven games en route to a Stanley Cup berth and victory.

However, the Devils still stand in the way of the Rangers’ chance to repeat history. After 18 years, Brodeur , now 40 years old, is the only remaining player from that series ’94 series. And 18 years later, he has a chance to redeem himself against the team that denied him all those years ago, as screams of “Matteau! Matteau! Matteau!” rang from television and radio sets all across the  New York/New Jersey area when New York’s Stefan Matteau stuffed home the series-winning goal in overtime of Game 7 back in 1994. There is no Matteau now, but there is still Marian Gaborik, Brad Richards, Ryan Callahan, or perhaps another playoff hero waiting to emerge on the Rangers, and the ghosts of Brodeur’s past should be enough to keep him motivated to stop that from happening again.

The Hudson River Rivalry. New York Rangers vs. New Jersey Devils. Game 6. Rangers fighting to stay alive, Devils looking to clinch a spot in the Stanley Cup Final. No matter the outcome of tonight’s game, the only guarantee is this: it’ll be one damn good game.

By Arun Morace

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Pilar Sanders posts audio of children saying Deion is abusive

Kobe Bryant dishes on trash talk with Dwight Howard

Raiders owner Mark Davis: 'We want to stay here in Oakland'

Terrance Knighton: Broncos fans are ‘high-maintenance'

Ex-NFL player delivers own baby on North Carolina farm

USC players not happy about Josh Shaw reinstatement

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

FSU student: Books stopped bullets from hitting me

Jets-Bills game could be moved to Detroit, Toronto, New Jersey

Michael Vick wants to play at least two more years

NHL's Jack Johnson is bankrupt, parents mostly responsible

Michael Phelps' self-proclaimed girlfriend was born a man

Report: LeGarrette Blount 'expected to sign' with Patriots

Raiders fans take out ad calling for Hue Jackson return

Eagles broadcaster has Cowboys turkey for Thanksgiving

Nick Young on his swag: 'I’m like Michael Jackson, Prince'

Le'Veon Bell adds Steelers o-line to award candidacy picture

Ranking the NBA's most exciting rookies

Steve Smith drops fantastic line about playing in prime-time

Five NFL teams we still have no clue about

Ten NFL coaches who would be fired if season ended today

ESPNU reporter makes tasteless 'joke' about FSU shooting

WATCH: Jason Kidd returns to chorus of boos in Brooklyn

James Harden wears ridiculous shirt; Twitter reacts

Top storyline for each Week 12 NFL game

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Phelps' alleged GF born a man?

Bears considered benching Cutler?

Can Cardinals win a Super Bowl with Drew Stanton?

Steeler: Blount's release a blessing

WATCH: Carter moved by tribute

Giancarlo Stanton and the cost of becoming a boss

Report: Sandoval headed to Red Sox

VIDEO: HBO's 'Under The Lights' is a must watch

Brady: Belichick not as he seems

The NFL Chick gloriously interviews for the Gators head coach job

NBA's first openly gay player to retire

Vonn shares Tiger's outrage over Golf Digest 'interview'

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.