I’ve been (not so) secretly rooting for a Rangers-Devils playoff series since the opening round. A Rangers-Devils series would be pretty beneficial for me at work, but as a fan I know it would have all the drama and, more importantly, fun we want from any playoff series. And that’s what we’re going to get.
It’s been, however, a long time since these two teams have been in the conference finals against each other. I was a junior in high school the last time. Marty Brodeur is the only player remaining in the NHL from that series (Alex Kovalev is playing in the KHL, but I say that doesn’t count).
Heck, the last time the Rangers were in the conference finals, it still wasn’t legal for me to drink (but being a college student, let’s say I bent that law quite a bit). I was living in D.C., and it was still O.K. to say you were a Washington intern without getting snickers (in fact, I was an intern in the shadows of the White House that summer). Oh, and the Rangers beat the Devils on their way to the conference finals that season — on a wrap-around on Brodeur.
But even in all that time, the Rangers-Devils rivalry always has been quite heated and always entertaining. Plus there’s been blood (sometimes literally) this season between these two teams. This series is sure to be hard fought, and I am pretty sure it’s going to go seven games.
There are a good number of fans, though, who have only known the rivalry since the lockout (which includes the only playoff series the Devils have won against the Rangers). And with the Rangers in the conference finals, we’re sure to have plenty of fans jumping on the bandwagon. But, man, you all need some help with your trash talking. Maybe it’s because the rivalry hasn’t been quite as heated as it is right now in quite some time.
Luckily for you, I live in the heart of Devils country (I am not repeating the bet I made with a co-worker because the consequences are so awful if the Rangers lose) and actually have been told by Devils fans I have “good material.” So here are some tips.
Do be humorous and with good cheer in your taunting. We all are hockey fans in the end, right?
Do be creative in your trash talking. Come up with new material.
Don’t use the same tired lines like “Brodeur likes cheeseburgers.” The “Marty is fat” jokes are old and tired at this point…Just like Chris Christie fat jokes.
Do know the Devils fans sore point: How Brodeur/Parise may not return after this year.
Don’t be a jerk and start ripping Devils fans at sensitive moments (unless they start it, of course). Think how you’d want to be treated in a similar situation.
Do remind Devils fans about Lundqvist’s outstanding numbers against Brodeur.
Don’t say Lundqvist is the best because, even if we hate him, Marty still holds a lot of records and has won several Stanley Cups.
Do remember the Devils no longer play in the swamp.
Don’t rip on New Jersey as a whole. Remember lots of Rangers fans (including myself) live here. It’s not all swamp or turnpike.
Do remind them of the Rangers playoff history against the Devils (they’ve only won one series against the Rangers).
Don’t harp on 1994. It was a long time ago. This goes back to being creative.
Do have fun. That’s what hockey is all about, and this is a really fun series even if it’s going to be painful.
Filed Under: Rangers
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