The Best Moment from Each New York Rangers Star in 2013

Jeremy FuchsCorrespondent IIIDecember 22, 2013

The Best Moment from Each New York Rangers Star in 2013

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    Scott Levy/Getty Images

    The New York Rangers have had an eventful 2013.

    After reaching the second round of the playoffs last season, they fired coach John Tortorella and hired Alain Vigneault as their new bench boss.

    That transition, however, has not been so smooth, as the Rangers find themselves outside of the playoffs.

    Despite that, there have been a number of magical moments from the Rangers' top players in the past calendar year. But which was the best moment from each star?

    Read on to find out. 

Ryan Callahan Sends Team to Playoffs

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    The Rangers needed a win to make the playoffs towards the end of last season.

    Enter Ryan Callahan.

    In overtime against Carolina on April 25th, Callahan received a pass from Derek Stepan and streaked down the left wing. He put a shot on net from an awkward angle, but it went through. The Rangers were in the playoffs.

    This is exactly what you want from a captain. When the chips are down, big players make big plays. That's exactly what Callahan did right here. 

Henrik Lundqvist Wills Team into Second Round

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    Bill Wippert/Getty Images

    Henrik Lundqvist has struggled a bit this season.

    But just a few months ago, he was on the top of his game. That should give Rangers fans hope that he'll rebound.

    In the first round of the playoffs against the Washington Capitals, the Rangers were down three games to two. It was desperation time.

    So how does Lundqvist respond? Sixty-two saves over two games, resulting in back-to-back shutouts and the Rangers headed to the next round.

    It was a virtuoso performance, with Lundqvist at the top of his game. It doesn't get much better than that.

    Maybe it was the peak of Lundqvist's career, given his struggles thus far. Or maybe this is just a phase. Whatever it is, the summit of his brilliance happened just a few months ago. 

Chris Kreider's OT Winner

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    Chris Kreider has had a tremendous rookie season, catapulting himself into the Calder Trophy race.

    But this is not his first go-around with the Rangers. He's played in 26 postseason games, with six goals and three assists.

    While he was dominant in the 2012 postseason, his best moment came in the 2013 playoffs.

    Down 3-0 to the Boston Bruins and in overtime, the Rangers season was just moments from ending. Kreider, at least for a game, extended it, receiving a terrific pass from Rick Nash and re-directing it on net. 

    He's been a revelation this season, but it all started with this moment last season, where he showed the type of difference-making player he can be. 

Rick Nash Scores His 300th Goal

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    Rick Nash has had a fantastic career.

    A true scorer, the winger has a total of 316 goals in his 11-year career.

    Acquired by the Rangers before the start of last season, Nash has made his impact felt immediately. He's scored 27 goals in 63 games.

    While in New York, the hulking sniper scored his 300th career goal, a meaningful milestone that cements his place amongst the game's elite. 

Derek Stepan's Hat Trick

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    After a slow start to the season, Derek Stepan finally broke out on November 2nd.

    Against the Carolina Hurricanes, the center scored three goals on seven shots, dominating all over the ice and showing why he's a viable candidate to represent the Americans in Sochi. 

    Stepan, who famously scored a hat trick in his first NHL game, hasn't had the best year. But this game shows what he can do. 

    This is a truly fantastic game from a quality player.