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The 7 Best Bars To Watch The NHL Playoffs

May 16, 2012 12:59 PM

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Brian Boyle of the New York Rangers checks David Clarkson of the New Jersey Devils to the ice at Madison Square Garden. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Brian Boyle of the New York Rangers checks David Clarkson of the New Jersey Devils to the ice at Madison Square Garden. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

As the so-called Tunnel Series takes place this week in the Tri-State, the Rangers and Devils will battle it out for a chance to compete for the Stanley Cup. Whether you root for New York or New Jersey – or if you’re just looking for a good sports bar atmosphere, we have your picks for the best bars to catch the NHL action.

More: The 5 Best Bars & Restaurants Near MSG

stout The 7 Best Bars To Watch The NHL Playoffs

(credit: Stout)


133 West 33rd Street
New York, NY 10003
(212) 629-6191

Just steps from the Garden, this Irish pub goes all out for the  big games at the World’s Most Famous Arena. With plenty of room to meet and mingle with other fans, plus a vast array of beers on tap,  you won’t be disappointed by the scene on this Midtown establishment. The Spinach and Artichoke Dip won’t disappoint, either – don’t skip it.

new image2 The 7 Best Bars To Watch The NHL Playoffs

(credit: Blarney Rock)

Blarney Rock Pub

137 West 33rd Street
New York, NY 10003
(212) 947-0825

Another Irish hangout in the MSG neighborhood, this old-school Irish bar still has the requisite pinch of grit lacking in so many of its Midtown neighbors. The walls are adorned with sports memorabilia, and the patrons are filled with spirit. While it’s lacking the swanky, dimly lit ambiance of Stout and other date-worthy sports bars, this is an ideal pick for a fan who wishes to watch the game without judgement.

wings from mercury bar The 7 Best Bars To Watch The NHL Playoffs

(credit: Mercury Bar)

Mercury Bar

659 9th Ave.
New York, NY 10036
(212) 262-7755

Mercury attracts a friendly neighborhood crowd – and no matter where you look you’ll see a game. In addition to the walls lined with flat screen TVs, the sports bar also serves up delicious game day grub. Mercury’s menu is made for snackin’ sports lovers with gameday drink specials, Buffalo wings, burgers and platters packed with fan favorites. Hang out with fellow basketball fanatics at Mercury Bar next time you are in the mood to catch a game.

rangers devils 1 The 7 Best Bars To Watch The NHL Playoffs

(Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

Tonic Bar

727 7th Ave.
New York, NY 10019
(212) 382-1059

Tonic takes its sports patrons’ enjoyment seriously. Decorations cover the interior, highlighting the event and engulfing its fans in a “we’re here to cheer” atmosphere. Be sure to catch some hoops on it’s 10 foot projection screen. Also, Tonic offers sports fans the best of the deep fryer — beer battered mozzarella sticks, silver dollar burgers and its own rendition of the ubiquitous Buffalo wing, Tonic wings, accompanied by its secret signature sauces. Bring your friend and cheer for your favorite basketball team at Tonic Bar.

Related: NYC’s 5 Best Bars For Late Night Bites

bar 515 The 7 Best Bars To Watch The NHL Playoffs

(credit: Bar 515)

Bar 515

515 3rd Ave.
New York, NY 10016
(212) 532-3300

Bar 515 has successfully merged the needs of the die-hard sports crowd with that of the casual fan. Its front bar offers panoramic plasma views while the back bar is a combo of sports and spa with a waterfall area available to calm the nerves of fanatics. A more upscale menu is the draw for the popular Eastside sports spot, Bar 515. Plasma TV screens line the walls of this well-known neighborhood haunt. If you love basketball and Portuguese octopus, you’ve come to the right place. Other unique food choices include: burgers marinated in Irish stout, Tzatziki, feta and roasted pepper dip as well as mini Buffalo chicken sliders. Please your palate and enjoy a great game of hoops at Bar 1515.

snap The 7 Best Bars To Watch The NHL Playoffs

(credit: SNAP/Facebook)


248 W. 14th St.
New York, NY 10011
(646) 350-0539

Snap’s retro vibe gives sports fans the chance to go back in time while feeling in the moment. The homey ambiance puts everyone on a level playing field, making the underdog upset possible. Sports, nightlife and pastime is its creed. A bit of a throwback to sports days of yore, Snap’s nostalgic atmosphere makes everyone feel right at home. Order up a basket of beer-battered onion rings, house-made pickles, double-pork-fried mac and cheese, or mix and match sliders — you can’t go wrong.

pizza and beer The 7 Best Bars To Watch The NHL Playoffs

The Stadium Grill

222 W 44th St.
Bowlmor Lanes
New York, NY 10036
(212) 680-0252

The Stadium Grill is sports 360 is designed to surround and submerge its patrons in its skybox. The vibe is casino-like with lots of action, energy and a real-time sports ticker. The Stadium Grill makes you feel like you’re at the game – in fact, the amenities are better than any arena with four levels of tiered seating and 29 HD screens. Munch on calamari, yellow fin tuna burgers and warm drunken donuts, just to name a few. Standard stadium fare includes pizza, burgers and a variety of scrumptious sandwiches.

Denise DiTrani is a freelance writer and has lived in New York City for 15 years. Her work can be found at

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