Actor Kevin Dillon (l.) aka Johnny Drama of ‘Entourage’ holds up a Rick Nash jersey as he attends Game 5 with the show’s creator Doug Ellin, an Islanders fan but friend of Nash.
At least that’s what actor Kevin “Johnny Drama” Dillon was rooting for on Sunday night – another win for the Rangers.
The Blueshirts had evened their Eastern Conference semifinal series last week in Tampa one day after Rick Nash had arranged for a private screening of Dillon’s new movie, “Entourage,” based on the popular former HBO show.
Dillon was in attendance for Game 5 at the Garden with “Entourage” creator and director Doug Ellin, who grew up a huge Islanders fan on Long Island, as did co-star Kevin Connolly.
“I’ve always been a big Rangers fan. I remember it was tough to be a Rangers fan when I was a kid because the Islanders were so good on their big run (in the 1980’s),” Dillon told the Daily News before the game. “But it’s so great to watch these guys (Ellin and Connolly) squirming. It’s nice to be on top right now.”
Ellin, who knows Nash through a childhood friend who works with the Ranger winger’s wife Jessica, admitted he’s “been getting heat” from Isles fans because of the perception that his movie has served as a bonding moment for the Rangers.
As Dillon noticed, “it’s a wild feeling” that the Blueshirts came out for warm-ups Sunday to Jane’s Addiction’s “Superhero,” the opening theme song to the “Entourage” TV show. The movie is scheduled to be released in theaters on June 3.
Nash arranges a screening of the new ‘Entourage’ movie for his teammates and then goes out and scores two goals in Game 4, getting the Blueshirts back to the Garden even in the series.
“I’m a diehard Islander fan and have been my whole life, but Jessica and Rick have been really good to us and Ryan McDonagh has, too,” Ellin said. “Kevin Dillon and Jerry Ferrara (who plays Turtle) are big Rangers fans, and we’ve always had these huge spirited debates. But it’s New York and I’m enjoying it. It’s great.
“I’ve had some interesting times at this arena through the years,” he added. “I wore my (Denis) Potvin (Islanders) jersey here when I was 10 years old and I got to get stuff thrown at me. So hockey has been in my blood for a long time. I’m making some peace with the Rangers right now, and it’s OK, I like it.”
Ellin also joked that Connolly, who directed the Isles-based ESPN 30-for-30 documentary “Big Shot” about fraudulent former owner John Spano, “isn’t dealing with” all of this Rangers love very well.
“I said Kevin, do you want to come with us tonight? And he said, ‘you have to be kidding me, they would kill me there, they would torture me,'” said Ellin, who grew up in Merrick, L.I. “I mean, I’m getting some social media abuse, too, like I’m a traitor and stuff, but it’s New York and it’s good for New York. It’s good for hockey for the Rangers to be involved. So like I said, I’m overcoming my early childhood nightmares, but I was glad to do it.
“We had dinner with (the Nashes) a few months ago, and I said, ‘We’ll show you guys the movie when it’s ready.’ I never expected it to happen like this. I just sent it over to Tampa and they worked it out, and really seemed to like it, so that was cool with us.”
Ellin also produced a New York-themed 30-for-30 documentary: “When the Garden was Eden” about the Knicks’ last championship teams in 1970 and 1973.
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