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March 17, 1993 (Rangers vs. Edmonton Oilers)
FINAL GAME WITH RANGERS
Dec. 30, 1998 (Rangers at Phoenix Coyotes)
INTERNATIONAL TOURNAMENTS WHILE IN RANGERS ORGANIZATION
1993 World Championships in Germany
RANGERS ORGANIZATION STATISTICS
Minor-league games: 0
Minor-league teams: None
Nicknames: Tik, The Grate One
Uniform Numbers: 10
Stanley Cup Champion: 1994
Retired from pro hockey: 2001
One of the great characters in Rangers history, Esa Tikkanen served three stints on Broadway, most notably as a member of the 1993-94 Stanley Cup Champion team.
Gifted with the abilityto get under his opponents skin by talking to them in a unique mixture of English and Finnish — a language his teammates referred to as "Tikkanese," — the left winger`s notorious ability to irritate and annoy opponents with his constant chatter earned him the nickname "The Grate One." It also made him incredibly popular in the locker room and with fans.
After capturing four Stanley Cups with the Oilers, the famed Finn first arrived on Broadway on March 17, 1993, from Edmonton in a trade-deadline deal for Doug Weight. Despite his arrival, the Blueshirts failed to make the playoffs for only the second time in 15 seasons that year.
The following season, however, Tikkanen helped power the Rangers to the Stanley Cup, recording 22 goals and 32 assists for 54 points and 114 penalty minutes in 83 games. His playoff experience with Edmonton was vital in helping the Rangers win two Game Sevens, and in 23 post season games, No. 10 scored four goals and four assists for eight points and 34 penalty minutes.
In the summer of 1995, Tikkanen was traded to the Blues along with Doug Lidster for Petr Nedved as compensation for St. Louis` having signed Rangers head coach Mike Keenan.
With the Blueshirts gearing up for another playoff run in 1997, Tikkanen returned to the Garden from Vancouver along with Russ Courtnall in another trade-deadline deal for Brian Noonan and Sergei Nemchinov. He played an integral role in the Rangers` run to the 1997 Eastern Conference Finals, skating in 15 games and notching nine goals and three assists four 12 points and 26 penalty minutes.
During the 1997 playoffs, Tikkanen had three game-winning goals, including two in overtime against Florida. His overtime slap shot off the goal net camera in Game 3 was hit so hard that officials didn’t realize it had gone in until they were able to view the play in slow motion..
After leaving the team via free agency, Tikkanen soon came back to New York when he signed as a Group III free agent in the fall of 1998. In what was his final season in the NHL, Tikkanen was hampered by a knee injury that significantly decreased his production to only three goals and no assists in 32 games.
º Photos of Stanley Cup Champions