In the dynamic realm of hockey, the sport offers a plethora of highlights that linger in our memories. The New York Rangers, a team with a rich history, have contributed numerous moments that resonate with many fans. In this feature titled “Remember When,” we delve into some of these moments—some noteworthy, others less so.
In this particular installment of “Remember When,” we revisit the year 1999. Despite the presence of Wayne Gretzky, the Rangers found themselves in a rebuilding phase, searching for an identity far removed from the glory days of their 1994 Stanley Cup run. One game from this season stands out, and it was a dramatic Rangers come back win over Florida in December.
On December 2nd, 1998, the Rangers faced off against the Florida Panthers at Madison Square Garden. The game unfolded with intense ebbs and flows, featuring three comebacks by the Rangers. Adam Graves emerged as the hero, securing a 5-4 victory with his second goal of the game, just 2 minutes and 10 seconds into overtime.
The comeback win serves as an inspiring moment in a season that was marked by rebuilding efforts. Despite trailing three times, the Rangers managed to level the score, 4-4, with one second remaining in regulation, thanks to a goal by Brian Leetch after pulling goalie Mike Richter for an extra attacker. Graves’ winning goal, assisted by Todd Harvey, marked his 10th of the season, leading the team.
Even with the Garden nearly half-empty at the game’s conclusion, the remaining fans filled the arena with chants and cheers. The red light glowing, the Rangers’ players streamed off the bench to celebrate with Graves—a scene rarely witnessed in those years.
Years later, a similar moment unfolded on January 12th, 2023, when K’Andre Miller staged a late-game tie against the Dallas Stars, and Adam Fox secured an overtime win for the Rangers.