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The Rangers and Devils are only about 10 miles away from each other—just a short drive through the Lincoln Tunnel. That's part of the reason why this rivalry is so hated.
The Rangers are 101-84-27-6 all-time against the Devils. Every game is an all-out war.
Let's start with the 1994 Eastern Conference Finals.
The Devils were up three games to two, when captain Mark Messier guaranteed a Rangers win. He put his money where his mouth was, scoring a hat trick to tie the series.
In Game 7, the Rangers were 7.7 seconds away from heading into the Stanley Cup when Valeri Zelepukin tied it to send it to overtime.
In the middle of the second overtime, Rangers history happened, as immortalized by Howie Rose:
Fetisov for the Devils plays it cross-ice, into the far corner. Matteau swoops in to intercept. Matteau behind the net, swings it in front. HE SCORES! MATTEAU!! MATTEAU!! MATTEAU!! STEPHANE MATTEAU!! AND THE RANGERS HAVE ONE MORE HILL TO CLIMB, BABY! BUT IT'S MOUNT VANCOUVER! THE RANGERS ARE HEADED TO THE FINALS!!!
The Rangers went onto win the Stanley Cup Finals that year.
The rivalry continues to be intense. While the Devils experienced great success in the late 1990s and early 2000s, it doesn't mean the games weren't great.
More recently, the two teams have sparred in the playoffs. The 2007 playoffs featured the infamous "Avery Rule", with Rangers forward screening Devils goaltender Marty Brodeur by waiving his stick back and forth.
The Rangers and Devils met up in the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals, this time with the Devils getting the best of the Rangers.
Rangers and Devils fans hate each other. Games feature fights in the stands. Whenever Brodeur lets up a goal, the Rangers crowd erupts in a "Maaarttyyy!!!! Maaarttyyy!!!!" chant. Devils fans are wont to erupt in "Rangers sucks!" chants at their games.
These two teams hate each other, there's no other way around it. The players hate each other. The fans hate each other. Every game is a battle, and this season will prove no different.