Twenty-five years ago today, Mark Messier immortalized himself in Rangers history.
The Blueshirts captain scored a hat trick in Game 6 of the 1994 Eastern Conference Finals, backing up his bold prediction from the day before that the Rangers would beat the Devils and force a Game 7.
Messier's goals all came in the third period and included the game-tying and go-ahead goals in the 4-2 road victory at Brendan Byrne Arena in East Rutherford, NJ.
Just one day earlier Messier channeled his inner Joe Namath when he told reporters, "We're going to go in and win Game 6. That was the focus this morning and it's the way we feel right now. We've done that all year, we've won all the games we've had to win.
"I know we're going to go in and win Game 6 and bring in back here [Madison Square Garden] for Game 7 ... We have enough talent and experience to turn the tide. That's exactly what we're going to do in Game 6."
With the Rangers trailing 2-1 at the start of the third period, Messier wasted no time in tying the game up with his first goal 2:48 into the period. Another 10 minutes passed before Messier struck again to give the Rangers the lead with 7:48 remaining in the game.
Messier capped the night with an empty-netter the length of the ice.
The Rangers of course went on to win Game 7 two days later, courtesy of an overtime wraparound from Stephane Matteau, and defeated the Vancouver Canucks in seven games to win the franchise's first Stanley Cup since 1940.