New York Rangers Comeback Caps Off Crazy Night at Madison Square Garden

Fans at Madison Square Garden went to a fight and a hockey game broke out as the final game between the Devils and Rangers caused chaos
Apr 3, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers center Matt Rempe (73) and New Jersey Devils
Apr 3, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers center Matt Rempe (73) and New Jersey Devils / Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Fireworks were expected at Madison Square Garden as the Devils and Rangers faced off for the first time since Matt Rempe got suspended for elbowing Devils defenseman Jonas Siegenthaler. The Devils trade deadline acquisition Kurtis MacDermid made it known that he was angry about Rempe declining a challenge not answering for said hit.

The excitement quickly built on Wednesday night as the Rangers and Devils announced their starting line-ups putting Rempe and MacDermid on the ice to start the game. What came next was unbelievable as all five skaters on each team dropped the gloves just two seconds into the game.

The fight resulted in four players on each team getting ejected with Jacob Trouba, Matt Rempe, K'Andre Miller, and Barclay Goodrow were ejected for the Rangers while the Devils lost Kevin Bahl, John Marino, Kurtis MacDermid, and Chris Tierney.

After the fight, Peter Laviolette and Travis Green exchanged words looking like the coaches may even get into the mix. The fights didn't stop there as Dawson Mercer went after Will Cuylle after a hit on Brendan Smith.

The Rangers took advantage of the early energy in the Garden with an Artemi Panarin goal off of an incredible play by Adam Fox followed by an Alexis Lafreniere goal to take an early 2-0 lead. The Rangers dominated play in the first period with 15 shots to the Devils four.

In the second period, the Devils came out hot flipping the script of the game with one of their better periods of the season. Ondrej Palat unleashed a beautiful shot past Shesterkin followed by two goals in 91 seconds from Brendan Smith and Nico Hischier which sent the Devils into the third period with a 3-2 lead.

Kaapo Kakko scored on Kaapo Kahkonen early in the third to tie the game at three taking advantage of a Luke Hughes broken stick. The Rangers would take the lead with five minutes remaining set up by a Brendan Smith penalty as Chris Kreider scored a tip-in goal assisted by Fox and Panarin. The Rangers would finish the game on top keeping hold of the lead for the Presidents Cup while putting the Devils on the brink of elimination.

The win capped off the season series in which the Rangers swept the Devils after New Jersey ended their 2023 season. The Devils held leads in their last three games, squandering them all, which could have seen them in the Wild Card race but, now they'll end up missing the playoffs.

Early Ejections may have been a Rangers blessing in disguise

The Early ejections of K'Andre Miller and Jacob Trouba could have sunk the Rangers in this game however in a way it may end up helping. Jacob Trouba clearly isn't ready to play after rushing his return from injury as shown by his struggles vs the Penguins. Getting the entire night off may be a positive as the Rangers prepare for a Stanley Cup run while Rangers fans would prefer if the team stayed out of further fights.

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