For the Metro Division Travel Guide series, I gathered input from fellow FanSided staff writers and fans who have frequented the featured arena. We will take a look at each member of the Metropolitan Division and cover three basic areas: why you should make the trip, the best food and drink options before and after the game, and the best (and affordable) seating options in the arena. With all divisional play now occurring within the Eastern Time Zone, travel has never been easier for Blue Jackets fans!
- For the fourth stop in the series, we will take a trip to the Big Apple for a visit to the New York Rangers. For some additional input, I turned to Shawn Taggart of Blue Line Station.
Madison Square Garden is currently the oldest arena in the National Hockey League and the fourth arena in New York City to carry the Madison Square Garden name. The Rangers have called the arena home since it was constructed in 1968. Located above Penn Station, one could feasibly take the train into the game and enter the arena without ever taking a step onto a New York City street. However, with Time Square a short walk away, as well as an endless supply of restaurants and bars nearby, taking the time to explore the pregame environment is a must. The scene outside MSG is always interesting before game time, because it is a mix of people in suits commuting home and a sea of blue jerseys. Once inside MSG there are banners, displays, and large posters showing various historical sporting events, concerts, and shows that have taken place at the arena.
Distance From Nationwide Arena:
When the Blue Jackets Will Be There:
Thursday, Dec 12, 2013: 7PM
Monday, Jan 6, 2014: 7PM
(Source: bluejackets.nhl.com )
Why It is Worth the Trip:
The main reason to come to MSG is because of the lure that the arena has. The history that MSG has, you can walk around the arena, and see how many times a musician sold out MSG. The players that donned a Ranger or Knick jersey. The numbers hanging in the rafters. You don’t have to be a Ranger or Knick fan, but you KNOW who they are. Plus you’re in New York City, 7-8 blocks from Times Square, you have everything at your finger tips ready and waiting for you. It’s amazing.
Best Pre/Post Game Hangout:
The Flying Puck, its where a lot of Ranger fans who don’t get tickets to the game go and watch the games with other Ranger faithful around the tri-state area. While there are other places to go, this is the only option that really matters, and is enjoyable to go and watch a game and share a brew with other Ranger fans.
Where you should sit:
It’s a little tricky with MSG, as its a corporate run arena. So ticket prices aren’t very fan friendly, but the 200 section is by far the best section to sit at with tickets starting at $95. The level up starts at $56, and the center sections of 300 are $60.
There have been recent reports that New York City may look to replace Madison Square Garden within ten years. The arena will be torn down and a new one will be built a few blocks away. While a decade gives you plenty of time to make it to the Garden, now is the best time to go. In the last three years, the arena has seen numerous upgrades that have brought the arena closer to modern day standards. For Columbus fans, there are several familiar faces on the Rangers roster and many are predicting the two teams will be close rivals. Between the electricity of the Rangers crowd and the greatest location for an arena in sports, a trip to Madison Square Garden should be on every hockey fan’s bucket list.