Prior to the start of last night's game against Tampa Bay, the Rangers honored former captain Ryan McDonagh, former alternate captain Dan Girardi and JT Miller in their first returns to Madison Square Garden.
JT- New York Rangers (@NYRangers) March 30, 2018
We thank you. pic.twitter.com/Ol6WD3NcQo
Before the game, Dan Girardi said that being back at MSG was "a little weird. Me and Mac went to Starbucks and walked over and a lot of fans came up to us and it was really nice and thanked us for our years here." (TB)
He said that it was going to be "quite interesting" to see how his emotions would be once the game started and noted that he had to ask questions about where to go as a a visiting player.
Asked if there was a single moment that stands out, Girardi cited defeating Montreal to advance to the Stanley Cup Final in 2014, Derek Stepan's series winning goal against Washington in 2015.
"I had a great time here for 11 years. My blood, sweat and tears bled blue for 11 years...it was such a great time for me and my family here and it means a lot to come back."
McDonagh said before the game that it was weird being at MSG as a visiting player and that he never imagined he would have to go through a situation like this. (TBL)
After the game, JT Miller said (NYR Game Notes):
- On scoring a goal tonight…"It felt nice. It was hard with a lot of emotions and thoughts coming into this game. You just want to go out and play your game and luckily, got one to come on my stick in front of the net."
- On the emotions involved in playing this game…"A month ago, I didn't expect to have to play this game. You try to keep it together during the game as much as possible. A lot of good friends there on the other side so you try to keep it serious and professional during the game. It was a cool experience what they did for me here."