For any NHL fan, there are always special games worth circling on the calendar. Ones that command an additional amount of excitement and bring out both the best, and in some cases, the worst in fans.
The beauty of the rivalry game is the intoxicating atmosphere; and even more so if it's a matchup of teams in close proximity. When a stadium is split 70/30 or even 60/40, it's really something special.
In a league that has existed for nearly 100 years, and which boasts 30 franchises, there's no shortage of rivalry possibilities. But it's the league's longevity and playoff format that are largely responsible for the birth of dozens of grudge matches.
But when choosing which of the rivalries are a step above the rest, one must consider the two team's proximity to one another, the length of their rivalry, the fan's level of passion, and most importantly, their shared playoff history.
So here they are; the seven most exciting, intense and passion-inducing rivalries in the history of the NHL. Because after all, it's rivalries that fuel passion, and passion that fuels hockey.