Andy Carroll netted a memorable hat-trick but the Hammers had to settle for a point in a thrilling 3-3 draw with Arsenal in the final ever London derby at the Boleyn Ground.
Carroll was back in the starting line-up for the first time in the Premier League since the 3-1 victory over Bournemouth back in January.
And the Hammers forward reminded everyone of his quality when he scored three goals inside eight minutes to help the home side stage an amazing comeback from a two goal deficit after Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez had put Arsenal in pole position.
The goals came at the perfect time for Carroll who is looking to impress England manager Roy Hodgson with the European Championship Finals just two months away.
It was the first hat-trick at the Boleyn Ground since Kevin Nolan's three goals against Reading back in May 2013 and looked to be enough to help the Hammers close the gap on the top four.
But Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny made it 3-3 on 70 minutes and both sides had to settle for a draw in one of the best games of the season witnessed at the Boleyn this season.
In a pulsating contest, the home side could have taken the lead on 13 minutes when Mark Noble's cross fell to Carroll who produced a superb over-head kick and the ball picked out Manuel Lanzini who converted from close-range but his effort was ruled out for offside.
Replays showed that the Argentine midfielder was onside when the ball was played across to him and the home side were right to protest the decision as another big decision went against the Hammers.
Arsenal made them pay as they opened the scoring on 18 minutes. Alex Iwobi played the ball into the path of Ozil who appeared to be in an offside position but he produced a clinical finish past Adrian into the corner of the net.
The north London club doubled their lead on 35 minutes and Iwobi was involved in the heart of the action once again when played a clever ball over the top of the Hammers defence which picked out Sanchez and he slid the ball past Adrian from close-range.
Despite falling two goals behind there were signs of a Hammers comeback when Carroll produced the best chance for the home side on 38 minutes when he picked up the ball just outside the penalty area and fired a powerful left-foot shot which produced a fine save from David Ospina diving low to his left.
The turnaround started on the stroke of half-time when the Hammers pulled a goal back on 44 minutes when Aaron Cresswell's cross fell perfectly for Carroll and he directed a powerful header past David Ospina into the corner of the net.
Adrian made a fine save to deny Monreal just after the restart and it proved crucial as the Hammers raced down the other end and made it 2-2 just 160 seconds later.
Dimitri Payet's corner was punched clear by Ospina. The loose ball fell to Noble who crossed into the chest of Carroll who saw his first attempt blocked by Gabriel Paulista.
But the Hammers forward made no mistake with his second effort as he fired the ball on the turn and his shot flew past Ospina.
It was the perfect way to end the half and with club legends Sir Trevor Brooking and Billy Bonds being introduced to the crowd at half-time alongside a number of heroes from the 1970's, everything was set up for a pulsating second half.
There was more controversy on 50 minutes when Carroll did well to keep hold of the ball inside the area following a challenge with Laurent Koscielny.
The loose ball fell to Payet who rolled the ball into the back of the net. The linesman awarded the goal but was over-ruled by referee Craig Pawson who blew his whistle for a foul on the Arsenal defender, much to the anger of the home support.
However, their mood quickly changed on 52 minutes when the majority of the Boleyn Ground went crazy as Carroll made it 3-2 to the home side.
Michail Antonio showed his quality once again when he raced past Nacho Monreal down the right hand and played the perfect cross in for Carroll who directed his header over the top of Gabriel and the ball flew into the roof of the net.
Manuel Lanzini produced one of the saves of the season on 68 minutes when he was in the right place to superbly clear a shot off the line from Monreal.
But Arsenal drew level on 70 minutes when Ozil's cross was flicked on by Welbeck into the path of Koscielny and he converted from close-range.
The Hammers tried to find a fourth goal and came close on 74 minutes when Payet's dipping shot well saved by Ospina low to his right hand side, but the game ended all-square.
All eyes now turn to the crucial FA Cup quarter final replay against Manchester United on Wednesday and it promises to be another special night under the lights at the Boleyn Ground.
West Ham (4-2-3-1) Adrian; Tomkins, Reid, Ogbonna, Cresswell; Kouyate, Noble; Antonio (Emenike 46), Lanzini, Payet; Carroll
Subs not used: Randolph (GK), Hendrie, Oxford, Obiang, Moses, Valencia
Yellow Cards: Carroll, Antonio
Arsenal (4-2-3-1) Ospina; Bellerin, Gabriel, Koscielny, Monreal; Coquelin (Ramsey 60), Elneny (Giroud 68); Sanchez, Ozil, Iwobi; Welbeck (Walcott 81)
Subs not used: Cech, Gibbs, Mertesacker, Chambers
Referee: Craig Pawson