The Best Moments from the Rangers' Incredible 2024 Playoff Run

Despite a heartbreaking Eastern Conference Finals loss, New York still had plenty of memorable moments throughout this postseason
New York Rangers v Carolina Hurricanes - Game Six
New York Rangers v Carolina Hurricanes - Game Six / Grant Halverson/GettyImages

As the 2024 Stanley Cup Finals truly get underway, the New York Rangers sadly must watch it play out from their home couches after falling in 6 games to the Florida Panthers. But even with the heartbreak, there were still plenty of memorable playoff moments for the Blueshirts this time around. Here's the best of the Rangers' playoff moments in 2024, in no particular order.

Igor Shesterkin's Dominance

Undoubtedly, the biggest reason why and how New York went as far in this postseason as they did has to do with the as-always stellar play by goaltender Igor Shesterkin. Two games stood out for the 28-year-old Russian netminder, the first a 54-save performance in Game 2 of the Carolina series, that game itself iconic in its own right (more on that later), and 33 saves in Game 3 of the Florida series, which gave New York a crucial 2-1 series lead before the inevitable. With his skills at his best level yet, Shesty could see a considerable pay increase coming his way during the free agency period at the beginning of July. A contract extension may also be a part of that package since he's also due to become a free agent himself after the 2025/26 season. But given the Rangers' own skills when it comes to reworking contracts, Blueshirts fans need not worry about the man who carried the whole team on his shoulders this postseason.

Vincent Trocheck's Double Overtime Goal

Game 2 of the Rangers' Carolina series ended up being a hard-fought 4-3 victory in double overtime, and the hero was someone who also had a stellar postseason for New York. Vincent Trocheck had a total of 8 goals and 12 assists for 20 points in the 2024 playoffs in 16 games played. That was more than even the Rangers' usual playoff powerhouses in Mika Zibanejad and Artemi Panarin, who also had some key playoff moments himself, like his between-the-legs OT winner against Carolina in Game 3. It's too bad most of the Rangers' playmakers didn't show up for the remainder of New York's playoff run, but like Carolina, Florida wasn't the easiest opponent draw. Maybe Boston would've been an easier opponent, but you just never know.

Alexis Lafrenière's Two Breakaway Goals Game

Besides Trocheck, New York's Quebecois young gun proved his worth with a stellar postseason performance of his own, no bigger than in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals. 8 goals and 6 assists for 14 points put the 22-year-old affectionately known as "Laffy" 4th on the Rangers postseason scoring list. Two of his 8 tallies came in that Game 3, a 5-4 overtime win in Florida, and they just so happened to be on a breakaway, all alone, and both were finished with some spicy backhander sauce. And once more, he did it on one of the league's best veteran goalies in Sergei Bobrovsky. He's not an easy guy to beat, let alone twice, and further, let alone on the same type of shot 2 separate times.

Chris Kreider's 3rd Period Natural Hat Trick

In what will undoubtedly be forever immortalized in New York Rangers franchise history, regular or postseason-wise, Chris Kreider's 3rd-period postseason natural hat trick boosted the Rangers to the ECF in impossible fashion when it looked like for sure all was lost. It looked like things were headed to a devastating Game 7, something the Rangers may not have won, given how tired they were after 6 long games. But Chris Kreider had other ideas and did something only 2 other Rangers in franchise history have ever done: scoring a hat trick in a single period of a single playoff game. The other two to do so? Mark Messier and Wayne Gretzky. Yes, that Mark Messier and Wayne Gretzky.

It won't be until early to mid October before the Rangers hit the ice again in what will be their 97th season in the league and 98th overall. Hopefully they retain many of their key playmakers that helped them get oh so close to their first Stanley Cup Finals in 10 years so they can make it the next time around.