In 2001, the buzz around that NHL draft was caused by mainly two players, Jason Spezza and Ilya Kovalchuk. The Atlanta Thrashers decided to go with Kovalchuk with the first pick. He was the first Russian to get selected first overall in the history of the NHL. So he had a lot of pressure on him.
The only time the New York Rangers met the New Jersey Devils in the Eastern Conference Finals was 1994. Stephane Matteu turned out to be the Game 7, Double OT star, which was one of his six goals that he had in the playoffs that season. To pick out who will be the star of this series we might look once again in the direction of Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur (now 40) who played in that game or Henrik Lundqvist, Vezina nominee who was 12 when the Rangers last won a Stanley Cup.