Eastern Conference finals preview: Rangers vs. Devils, playoff experience

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One of the most popular “head to head” angles at this stage of the season is playoff experience. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the playoff resumes from both New York and New Jersey

New York Rangers

Most postseason games:

Ruslan Fedotenko (102), Brad Richards (77), Mike Rupp (57), Henrik Lundqvist (49), Marian Gaborik (48).

Stanley Cup finals appearances:

Fedotenko (2004, 2009), Richards (2004), Rupp (2003).

Stanley Cups won:

Fedotenko (2004, 2009), Richards (2004), Rupp (2003).

Notes:

Richards won the Conn Smythe in 2004 with an all-time performance: 26 points in 23 games, seven PP goals and seven game-winning tallies.

Fedotenko and Rupp scored back-to-back Cup-winning goals, both in Game 7s. Rupp scored at 2:22 of the second period to beat the Ducks in 2003, Fedotenko scored at 14:38 of the second to beat the Flames.

New Jersey Devils

Most postseason games:

Martin Brodeur (193), Patrik Elias (150), Petr Sykora (127), Dainius Zubrus (80), Anton Volchenkov (73), Bryce Salvador (62), Steve Bernier (56).

Stanley Cup finals appearances:

Sykora (2000, 2001, 2003, 2008, 2009), Brodeur (1995, 2000, 2001, 2003), Elias (2000, 2001, 2003), Volchenkov (2007), Zubrus (1997).

Stanley Cups won:

Brodeur (1995, 2000, 2003), Elias (2000, 2003), Sykora (2000, 2009)

Notes:

Alexei Ponikarovsky has played in 50 playoff games.

Elias famously assisted on Jason Arnott’s Cup-winning goal in 2000.

Brodeur has never won the Conn Smythe trophy despite winning three Cups.

Synopsis

The only real distinct difference between the two teams is behind the bench, where John Tortorella (71 playoff games) is vastly more experienced than Peter DeBoer (12).

Torts led the Lightning to the Stanley Cup in 2004 in a decidedly different fashion to what the Rangers are doing this year — the ’04 Bolts  beat the Islanders 4-1 in the opening round before sweeping Montreal in Round 2.