3.) Rod Gilbert, Right Wing
You could argue Rod Gilbert is the greatest Ranger of all-time. The fan-favorite scored over 400 goals as a New York Ranger in 18 seasons playing in the Big Apple; while chipping in an astonishing 615 assists. The winger’s goals and assists total make him the Rangers all-time leading goal scorer with 1,021 points. He once famously played on a line known as the “GAG,” Goal A Game line. Gilbert also had 67 career playoff points in 79 games played.
The former assistant captain was the first player in Rangers’ history to have his number (7) retired, and was also inducted into the Hockey Hall Of Fame in 1982.
2.) Mark Messier, Center
Where to begin with No. 2 on our list? Mark Messier had two stints with the Rangers that combined to be a total of 10 seasons. In Messier’s first year with New York (1992) he collected his second Hart Trophy (League MVP) and the Rangers also finished with the league’s best overall record — earning the President’s Trophy.
“The Captain,” then led New York to their first Stanley Cup championship, in over 50 years, in dramatic fashion during the 1994 season. After the team fell behind in the series 3-2 during the Eastern Conference Finals (New Jersey Devils) Messier paved the way for the comeback. He famously publicized and guaranteed a game six victory over the Rangers cross-town rivals in front of the New York media.
Not only did the Rangers win game six and seven to then go on and defeat the Vancouver Canucks in the Stanley Cup to end the “curse,” but Messier had a hat trick in the “guaranteed” victory against New Jersey. Talk about legendary?
1.) Brian Leetch, Defenseman
Other than Messier’s game six guarantee the first player and thing that comes to mind when you hear or see “New York Rangers” has to be Brian Leetch. The former captain, who also humbly gave up the “C” to Messier in his return to New York in 2001, has numerous Rangers accomplishments.
Leetch is second all-time in regular season games played (1129), first all-time for assists (741) and is first all-time for goals by a Rangers’ defenseman with 240. The American-born player was a two-time Norris Trophy winner (Best defenseman) as a Blue Shirt, and won the Conn Smythe Trophy (Playoff MVP) during the ’94 Cup-winning-run. And, in 1992 Leetch was the fifth defenseman in NHL history to have earned 100 points during the regular season, not too shabby.
The 10-time NHL All-Star, all with New York, is the ultimate definition of what it means to be a New York Ranger. Leetch’s No. 2 was retired in January of 2008, and the all-time great is still heavily involved with the franchise and the surrounding New York community to this day.Previous 3 Players In The List