Archive for the Top 10 New York Sports Rivalries Category

#8: New York Giants vs. Philadelphia Eagles

Posted in Giants, Top 10 New York Sports Rivalries on July 15, 2012 by EAST SIDE RYNO

In the last five years, this has been the biggest rivalry in football. Yes, you can argue that Ravens/Steelers or Jets/Patriots rivalries have been significant, but I’ve never seen two franchises hate each other as much as the Eagles and Giants in my lifetime.

The Eagles and Giants rivalry dates all the way back to 1933, but the hatred between these teams didn’t start until the 1940’s when Philadelphia started to have a winning franchise. The Eagles would win back-to-back NFL championships in 1948 & 1949, while adding another in 1960. In 1960, in a regular season matchup, Eagles linebacker Chuck Bednarik famously blindsided Giants’ star running back Frank Gifford, causing Gifford to retire (for the time being). In 1978, the Giants were leading the Eagles 17-12 with just 20 seconds remaining. But instead of taking a knee, the G-Men decided to run one more running play. Quarterback Joe Pisarcik fumbled the hand-off to running back Larry Czonka, allowing Eagles cornerback Herman Edwards to pick up the ball and run into the end zone for a game-winning touchdown. For Eagles fans, this game is known as the “Miracle at the Meadowlands,” while for Giants fans it’s know simply as “The Fumble.”

Given how close New York and Philadelphia are to each other and how passionate the fans are for these historic teams, this rivalry deserves to be on this list. Here are some of the top games in the last twenty years between the Eagles and G-Men:

October 31, 1999 – Strahan Wins it in OT

On a cold Halloween night at the Vet, the Giants marched into Philly with a 4-3 record. The Eagles were struggling at the time with rookie Donovan McNabb starting at quarterback and led by first-year head coach Andy Reid. This game would turn out to be a classic. With the Giants down 17-3 heading into the fourth quarter, the Giants would score twice to tie the game. In overtime, Giants defensive lineman Christian Peter tipped McNabb’s pass which landed in the hand of the Michael Strahan. The all-pro defensive end picked off the pass and returned it for a touchdown sealing the comeback victory.

January 7, 2001 – Sehorn’s Pick-Six Leads Giants to NFC Championship

In the 2000 season, the NFC East rivals met in the  NFC Divisional Playoffs. The heavily favored Giants began the game with a 97 yard kick-off return by Ron Dixon, and they didn’t look back. In one of the most memorable plays in Giants playoff history, G-Men cornerback Jason Sehorn made an acrobatic interception and returned it for a touchdown. The Giants would go on to win the game 20-10 and march onto the NFC Championship.

January 7, 2007 – Eagles Knock off Giants with Akers’ Game-Winning Field Goal

Exactly six years after the Giants defeated the Eagles in the playoffs, Philadelphia would get redemption. In the 2006 Wild Card match-up, the Giants headed to the Linc as the heavy underdogs. The Giants looked promising at the beginning of the 2006 season with a 6-2 record. But after finished the second half the season at an abysmal 2-6, the G-Men found themselves crawling into the playoffs. Meanwhie, the Eagles were hottest team in the NFL in November and December. With McNabb out for the season, backup quarterback Jeff Garcia led Philadelphia to five straight victories to close out the season and clinch the NFC East. The Giants would give the Eagles a good fight in the playoffs, but the Eagles would go on to prevail with a game-winning field goal by David Akers as time expired.

December 19, 2010 – Miracle at the Meadowlands 2

Nothing new to write here – just read the article on 5BS from when it happened.

September 25, 2011 – Giants shock Dream Team

After a phenomenal offseason by the Eagles given the signings of Cullen Jenkins, Nnamdi Asomugha, and Vince Young, Philadelphia was self-proclaimed the “Dream Team.” The Giants, on the other hand, looked like a team in turmoil. Having lost their starting cornerback Terrell Thomas and linebacker Jonathan Goff to season-ending injuries, and having lost starting tight end David Boss and wide receiver Steve Smith to free agency, the Giants looked a team destined for the NFC East cellar. But in week 3, the GMen went into the Linc and stunned the Eagles with a 29-16 victory. The Giants would go on to win the Super Bowl while the Eagles failed to make the playoffs.

Advertisements

#9: New York Rangers vs. New York Islanders

Posted in Islanders, Rangers, Top 10 New York Sports Rivalries on April 26, 2012 by EAST SIDE RYNO

Dennis Potvin’s hit on Ulf Nilsson upgraded this Rivalry from a Battle to a War

Most people in my generation remember the intense Devils / Rangers rivalry in the mid to late 1990’s. When the Rangers and Devils faced off in the 1994 Eastern Conference Finals, it went down as one of the greatest series in NHL history. The Blue Shirts went on the defeat the Devils in seven games ending with Rangers’ forward Stephane Matteau scoring in overtime to win the series. But in the following season, the Devils would bounce back and win a Cup of their own.

The Devils/Rangers rivalry was one of the greatest rivalries in hockey, but it doesn’t even compare to the historic Rangers/Islanders rivalry dating back to 1975. Even though the Islanders franchise has had the reputation as one of the worst teams in the NHL since 1996, this New York hockey rivalry remains strong to this day. The Islanders franchise was established in 1972, but they were the laughing stock of the NHL in their first three seasons. In 1975, they made the playoffs for the first time and faced the heavily favored Rangers in the first round. The series would go to a third and decisive game at the Garden and overtime, Isles’ forward J.P Parise (son of Devils star Zach Parise) would score the series-clinching goal to oust the Rangers. The Islanders advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals, but eventually would lose to the Flyers. Nonetheless, the “Battle of New York” officially ignited.

The two teams would meet again in the playoffs in 1979, this time the Islanders being the heavy favorites. But the Blue Shirts stunned the Isles by eliminating them in six games. In the 1980’s, the Islanders would gain their vengeance on the Rangers by simply dominating the rivalry. The Isles would go on to play the Rangers in the playoffs every year from 1981-1984 and win every series. During this time, the Islanders won four straight Stanley Cups (one more than the Rangers’ three at the time). In the 90’s the Rangers finally had bragging rights by defeating the Islanders in 1990 and 1994, and of course winning the Cup in ’94 as well.

Ken Morrow’s OT Goal vs. the Rangers in the 1984 playoffs was ranked the most famous goal in New York Hockey History

The one player in the center of this heated rivalry from 1975-1994 was the Islanders’ Hall of Fame defenseman Dennis Potvin. In 1979, Potvin put a hard hit on Rangers’ center Ulf Nilsson, which Rangers fans claim was one of the dirtiest hits in hockey (apparently it was a clean hit). After the hit, Nilsson was never the same player again. The Battle of New York was also home to some of the grittiest fights in hockey history. Who can forget the classic fights between Clark Gillies and Ed Hospodar?

Today the Battle of New York  is still in full bloom as the Garden continues to chant “Potvin Sucks” during any games of the season. With the Islanders improving, let’s look forward to this rivalry to gain even more heat in the next few years.

Top 10 New York Sports Rivalries (in the last 20 Years)

Posted in Top 10 New York Sports Rivalries on March 6, 2012 by EAST SIDE RYNO

Image

It’s been a while since our last countdown, so let’s start one. With great success, comes great rivalries. In New York, our sports teams have had some memorable rivalries against teams from all over the country. So for the next couple of weeks, we will bring you our list of the best rivalry matchups this city has seen in the last twenty years.

Starting with…

#10. Chicago Bulls vs. New York Knicks (1992-1996)

In 1992, Pat Riley became the head coach of the New York Knicks and immediately changed the image of Knicks basketball. With the way Riley demanded toughness on the court, it was easy for NBA teams to hate the Knicks. Every game was physical, and in every playoff game a fight was expected. From 1992-1996, the Knicks and the Chicago Bulls matched up in the playoffs four times. In 1992, New York took over as being the “other” Eastern Conference powerhouse since the Pistons and the Celtics diminished into mediocrity. The Knicks were the only team who could match up against the Bulls.

1992 Eastern Conference Semi-Finals:

In the previous season, the Bulls swept the Knicks in the first round while on their way to their first championship. But in 1992, the Knicks were finally good enough to go head-to-head with the beasts of the East. The series went to seven games, but once against Chicago prevailed at home in Game 7 winning 110-81. This series kick-started the rivlary.

1993 Eastern Conference Finals

In the 1992-1993 season, the Knicks surprisingly finished ahead of the Bulls in the regular season and had home court advantage. New York would go on to take the first two games at home with Game 2 having the memorable moment of John Starks dunking over Michael Jordan and Horace Grant. But in Game 3, the Bulls would trounce the Knicks 103-83 while John Starks was ejected for fighting. The Bulls would go on to win the next three games and the series 4-2.

(Gets Physical at 06:50)

1994 Eastern Conference Semi-Finals:

With Michael Jordan retired, the Knicks were finally the favorites coming into the Conference Semi-Finals against Chicago. Once again New York would take the first two games at the Garden. But when the series went to Chicago, the rivalry exploded. In Game 4, Knicks guard Derek Harper shoved Bulls’ guard Jo Jo English into the first row causing a bench-clearing brawl. Harper would be suspended for two games, while English was suspended for one. The series would go to a seventh decisive game at the Garden. With an 87-77 victory, the Knicks were finally headed to the NBA Finals.

1996 Eastern Conference Semi-Finals:

With Michael Jordan back with in basketball, the Bulls finished the 1995-1996 regular season with the greatest record in NBA History: 72-10. Not surprisingly, Chicago would trounce the Knicks in the conference semi-finals in five games. The Bulls were headed for another three-peat.