What's buzzing:

Puck Daddy

Rangers eliminate Capitals in Game 7; is history repeating for New York?

Sean Leahy
Puck Daddy

View photo

.

Getty Images

As the final buzzer sounded during the New York Rangers' 2-1 win over the Washington Capitals to advance to the Eastern Conference Final against the New Jersey Devils, the similarities to their Stanley Cup run in 1994 continued to grow.

In 1994, the Rangers finished atop the Eastern Conference with 50-plus wins, just like this year.

In 1994, the Rangers had an All-Star Game MVP in Mike Richter, just like this year with Marian Gaborik.

In 1994, the Rangers defeated the Capitals to advance to the conference final, just like this year.

[Related: Judging level of success for Capitals]

And in 1994 the Rangers met the Devils in a memorable conference final that ended thanks to a Stephane Matteau wrap-around.

It remains to be seen how things will end this time around, but if you're a Rangers fan looking for some sort of cosmic sign that this is their year, well, history does have a way of repeating itself.

In 2012, Brad Richards, New York's $60 million man, again stepped up and delivered. After setting up Marian Gaborik's goal in the third overtime of Game 3, then scoring the game-tying goal with 6.6 seconds left in their miracle comeback in Game 5, his goal 92 seconds into the first period opened the scoring and sent an already on-edge Madison Square Garden into a frenzy. It was Richards' fourth goal of the series and sixth of the playoffs.

Richards' goal was looking to be the only one until when midway through the third period Michael Del Zotto gave New York a 2-0 cushion, which Washington quickly cut in half 38 seconds later by Roman Hamrlik. "We never make it easy," said Richards to NBC Sports Network's Pierre McGuire after the game. He was right. Just 36 seconds after the Hamrlik goal, Ruslan Fedotenko was called for a delay of game penalty giving the Capitals a power play.

It was a tense final 9:17, but relief overcame MSG once the scoreboard read 0:00 and Rangers fans could finally breathe again.

"King" Henrik Lundqvist was deserving of his noble title making 22 saves. It was Lundqvist's second career win in a Game 7 and a measure of revenge from 2009 when the Capitals eliminated the "King" and all of his men in seven games in the first round.

Monday begins their challenge with Game 1 against the Devils and the storylines have already been written.

The March line brawl will be replayed ad nauseam and war of words that ensued between Peter DeBoer and John Tortorella will be revisited in order to add a touch of spice. Then you have the memories of 1994, of course.

Follow Sean Leahy on Twitter at @Sean_Leahy

Other popular content on Yahoo! Sports:
Dan Wetzel: Florida State trustee may have lit the fuse on a move to the Big 12
Eric Adelson: Rickie Fowler's popularity has a lot to do with motocross legend Jeremy McGrath
David Beckham scores with a vintage David Beckham free kick

View Comments (72)
  • Cousin of NBA star Wade killed in Chicago shooting: media

    Nykea Aldridge, 32, a mother of four, was shot in the head and arm by crossfire at about 3:30 p.m. local time on Friday in Chicago's Parkway Gardens neighborhood near a school where she had gone to register her children, the Chicago Tribune reported … More »

    Reuters - 12 minutes ago
  • Dagg brace ensures All Blacks retain Bledisloe Cup

    Dagg brace ensures All Blacks retain Bledisloe Cup

    By Greg Stutchbury WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Israel Dagg scored two tries as the All Blacks beat Australia 29-9 in their Rugby Championship clash on Saturday, which also ensured they retained the Bledisloe Cup for another year. Flyhalf Beauden … More »

    Reuters - 15 minutes ago
  • Hamilton penalty up to 55 places after more engine changes

    Hamilton penalty up to 55 places after more engine changes

    SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS, Belgium (AP) -- Lewis Hamilton's grid penalty for the Belgian Grand Prix has increased to a whopping 55 places after Mercedes made further engine changes on Saturday. … More »

    AP - Sports - 19 minutes ago
  • Plenty of new college football fans for 1st game of season

    Plenty of new college football fans for 1st game of season

    It was more than two hours before the start of Saturday's U.S. college season opener between California and Hawaii, and Anthony Goodluck and his son were already milling outside Sydney's Olympic stadium, soaking up the early atmosphere. ''I … More »

    AP - Sports - 24 minutes ago
  • Friday's Sports in Brief

    LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Kris Bryant heard the ''MVP'' chants from the contingent of Chicago fans at Dodger Stadium. Inside the clubhouse, his teammates showered him with more of the same. … More »

    AP - Sports - 1 hour 6 minutes ago