New York Rangers forward Pavel Buchnevich was taking warmups at the Garden Wednesday night until, suddenly, he gifted his stick to a kid in a Buch jersey creating a strong, lifelong hockey bond. 

New York Rangers forward Pavel Buchnevich was in the middle of warmups when he looked over to the side boards and saw a kid in a Buchnevich jersey calling out to him. So Pavel did what so many fans hoped he would do for them.

He skated over and gifted his new friend, Benjamin, his stick.

Benjamin, a Junior Ranger, could not hold back his emotions. Nor should he.

Once he had Buchnevich’s stick in his hands, the tears of shock and happiness began to roll down his face. The joy this child showed to MSG and probably the world by the time the night ended was contagious.

As the warmups continued, Buchnevich came over to the glass and took a picture that Benjamin will never forget.

Benjamin and his hero, Pavel:

In an era of sports in which the main topics are usually money, contracts, wins and losses or championships, it was refreshing to see a story about what the sport means to a child. Benjamin simply wished to watch his Rangers and his favorite player, Pavel Buchnevich, play at the World’s Most Famous Arena.

The Rangers have suffered through a horrible season and as the regular season winds down, there aren’t as many good things to witness this time of year. But for tonight, we were able to witness one child’s happiness, over a hockey stick, that should make all of us realize how great the simplest things in sports can be.

The Rangers went on to defeat the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-3 in overtime. I don’t think Benjamin had time to calm down and watch any of the game.

He didn’t have too. He was already proclaimed fantastic winner prior to the opening faceoff.

A graduate of St. John's University class of '91. I have been a fan of the New York Rangers since the days of Peter Puck. Founder of Ranger Proud, the Facebook page that covers all news, notes, pre /post-game stats, and player quotes. I can be reached at