Chris Kreider of the New York Rangers celebrates his second...

Chris Kreider of the New York Rangers celebrates his second goal of the game against the Ottawa Senators at Madison Square Garden on April 9, 2022. Credit: Getty Images/Bruce Bennett

The Rangers were having a heck of a millennium for a while there — playoffs almost every year, including a Stanley Cup Final, an iconic star in Henrik Lundqvist and a party-like-it’s-1994 vibe at the Garden.

Then came “The Letter” in February 2018, in which the Blueshirts announced a rebuild, and New York sports marched on without them.

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The Rangers were having a heck of a millennium for a while there — playoffs almost every year, including a Stanley Cup Final, an iconic star in Henrik Lundqvist and a party-like-it’s-1994 vibe at the Garden.

Then came “The Letter” in February 2018, in which the Blueshirts announced a rebuild, and New York sports marched on without them.

There were Jacob deGrom Cy Youngs and Pete Alonso home runs and big-name Nets additions and two Islanders Cup semifinals and Julius Randle “M-V-P” chants.

No, really. There used to be Julius Randle “M-V-P” chants. That happened.

Now here we are in late April 2022, and as dawn broke on Tuesday, this was a Rangers town again, and could be for the next two months.

Do not bother saying “nobody cares about hockey, Boomer.” Many of us do, and more of us should, given the state of metropolitan-area sports and what the Rangers have a chance to do.

(Yes, even Islanders fans should care, if I may be so bold, given what deep local playoff runs do for hockey’s visibility around here.)

The Rangers are good, they are exciting, they have star power, and they have as much of a chance as any of the eight Eastern Conference entries to advance to the Final.

And regardless of the outcome of their pennant race with the Hurricanes — including their loss to Carolina, 4-3, Tuesday night — it is likely that come next week they will do something that has not happened in more than 10 months: a New York-area NHL, NBA, MLB or NFL team winning a playoff game.

Not a series. A game. Just. One. Game. Ten months, nine teams, no wins.

The last time it happened was on June 23, 2021, when the Islanders’ Anthony Beauvillier scored in overtime to beat the Lightning in Game 6 of the NHL semifinals — in an arena that no longer is in the NHL.

That was a great moment at Nassau Coliseum, and it has been followed by . . . nothing.

The Yankees lost a wild-card game to the Red Sox, which seemed like a crushing defeat until what happened on Monday night.

After surviving the play-in tournament, the Nets lost to the Celtics, 116-112, at Barclays Center to complete a first-round Boston sweep and a Nets season that ranks among the most spectacular flops in the history of New York sports.

Other disappointing teams over the decades — including this season’s Islanders, by the way — can get on with their lives now. The Nets were worse than all of them.

But while co-general managers Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant meet with their assistants, Joe Tsai and Sean Marks, to assess what went wrong, the Rangers are here to provide some non-baseball sports entertainment.

Can they win it all? Sure. Will they? Probably not, given the randomness of the NHL playoffs.

But it would be a shock if they went down as meekly as the Nets did.

The Rangers are strong in goal, their top six forwards are as dynamic as they come, and Jericho’s own Adam Fox is the reigning Norris Trophy winner on defense.

If Artemi Panarin were a basketball player, he’d be . . . Kyrie Irving, minus the sideshow.

So, Rangers fans, buckle up for what could be a fun ride. As for everyone else, consider hopping aboard the bandwagon for a spell.

New York’s playoff calendar is clear: Come May, it belongs to the Rangers.