These days on social media can turn into a complete circus literally. Or a clown show. It doesn’t take much for things to unravel or escalate on Twitter. No matter what the topic is, it can spiral out of control quickly.
As someone who shares a Hudson Rivalry blog with a diehard Devils fan in Hasan, I don’t mind the chaos that comes with it. Besides, my favorite character is the late Heath Ledger’s Joker from the memorable 2008 hit movie The Dark Knight. He was an “Agent of Chaos,” like he told Harvey Dent after visiting him in the epic hospital scene below.
So, yesterday the official Twitter account of the Devils Mascot triggered Rangers fans. Such is chaotic life in a once dead rivalry that’s about to get a huge jolt this Fall.
Ironically, NJDevil was responding to a tweet from the New York Rangers that tweaked former Islanders goalie Robin Lehner after the clowns at the NHL royally screwed up by putting Rangers instead of Islanders on his 2018-19 Bill Masterton Trophy.
Predictably, the Devils Mascot tweaked the Garden Faithful by indicating that is the only thing “you’ve won in a while.”
Well played. Even if the Devils have only made the playoffs once since their run in 2012, they still have bragging rights as far as success this century. Sure. 2003 is in the rear window. But let’s face facts. The goal for the Rangers is to win a Cup. They made runs in the Henrik Lundqvist Era with the sting of 2014 still fresh along with the sour ending to 2015.
If the Devils’ last two championships (’00, 03) are a while ago, then the Rangers’ lone Cup victory in ’94 feels like forever. They commemorated the 25-Year Anniversary last February in a excellent ceremony that included a preclude of John Davidson returning along with a very well stated speech from The Captain, Mark Messier. It was a great night with some nostalgia. The Garden felt like it used to.
Nobody on either side of The Rivalry can predict what will happen. It’s great to have bright young players who should become future stars for each franchise. Jack Hughes and Kaapo Kakko will be closely watched by everyone. The first and second picks in the 2019 NHL Draft will be under the radar in the backdrop of a unique rivalry that has New York City and New Jersey front and center. Newark and Broadway.
It’s perfect. So too are lightning rod PK Subban and Jacob Trouba with each expected to give a significant boost to the respective rivals’ bluelines. Subban is the larger than life personality the Devils have lacked. He has much to prove after getting moved for a second time over three summers. Hard to fathom. Trouba is the more quiet and younger defenseman who the Rangers are banking on to address their right side. We’ll see how he adjusts from Winnipeg to playing in the Big Apple.
There’s a lot to like about both teams. As we draw closer to September, the excitement on both sides of the Hudson is palpable. With it has come the trash talk we haven’t seen in quite some time.
I’ll admit to amusement seeing this kind of intensity between fans. So much of that had disappeared due to how down the teams have been. Taylor Hall did have a special Hart season in ’17-18 by carrying the Devils back to the postseason before getting eliminated in five games by the Lightning. Then an injury riddled ’18-19 robbed him and turned New Jersey into a very bad team that landed Hughes with the top pick.
Ironically, the Rangers won the lottery by moving up into the top three and landing Kakko at number two. Something very unexpected. Don’t forget the Devils couldn’t drop lower than three. The Rangers have missed the playoffs the past two seasons, going from one of the better teams that made the postseason to a rebuilding club looking to return to respectability. They’re hoping both Trouba and pricey Russian star forward Artemi Panarin can lift them back into contention.
Only time will tell. For now, I’ll reiterate what I said this morning in this tweet response.
We have a lot to look forward to. Let’s embrace it!