Skip to main content

New York Rangers' 85th Anniversary

While the Vancouver Canucks and Buffalo Sabres are celebrating their 40th anniversary in the National Hockey League, the New York Rangers have them both beat. The Rangers are celebrating their 85th anniversary this season.

The Rangers won their very first game by a score of 1-0 over the Stanley Cup champion Montreal Maroons way back on November 16th, 1926. Bill Cook (pictured below), on a pass from brother Bun Cook, scored the only goal of the game, with less than 2 minutes left in the 2nd period. Hal Winkler got the shutout, with Clint Benedict at the other end of the ice.

There is no footage available on YouTube, but the Montreal Gazette does have an article, courtesy of Google News Archives.

The game was described as "rather rough and loosely played." Rather rough? 18 penalties were assessed, most notably featuring a stick fight between Montreal's Bat Phillips and NYR's Frank Boucher, who was bloodied in the melee. Both were immediately assessed 5 minute majors and $15 fines! Of all the players in the game, these two may have been the most unlikely combatants, especially Boucher who would go on to win the Lady Byng trophy for gentlemanly play 7 times in 8 years from 1928 through 1935.

A reported 13,000 people entered Madison Square Gardens (the old Gardens had a capacity of 15,000 for hockey) for the inaugural Rangers game. The New York elite were out in full force, as the game played in aid of the Grosvenor Neighborhood House.

Silent movie star Lois Moran took part in the pre-game ceremonies, while the West Point Band entertained the crowd during intermissions.

Of course, the National Hockey League was not exactly new to New York. The New York Americans began playing in the NHL the season prior.


Popular posts from this blog

100 Greatest Hockey Players Of All Time

What follows is a listing of the 100 greatest hockey players of all time, in my opinion. As discussed earlier, the definition of greatness is a very personalized endeavor and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it.
While there is no way of ever truly ranking the top 100 definitively, it is important for the creators of such lists to be open and transparent of how the came to their conclusions. That accountability allows the reader to better understand the process. 

Although admittedly I'm using a completely unscientific formula, I weigh career achievements (era statistics, awards, championships) and legacy (impact on and off ice, peak dominance) equally high. I rank player ability as the third most important ingredient, as first and foremost as a tie breaker. Hence, I'm not necessarily looking for the better player, as in text book definitions of what a hockey player should be, but for players with the greatest careers and greatest legacies. Therefore the best player is not n…

Top Ten Junior Players Of All Time

Let's take a look at the Top Ten junior players of all time. For the purposes of this list we will at players in the WHL, OHL and QMJHL only.

10. Pat Lafontaine, Verdun, QMJHL Rookie-record 104 goals, 234 points in 1982-83; major junior player of the year.

9. Denis Potvin, Ottawa, OHL 254 games, 95 goals, 234 assists, 329 points. Broke Bobby Orr's junior records.

8. John Tavares, Oshawa, OHL 215 goals, 433 points in 247 games; most goals in OHL history; eligibility rules changed to admit him at 15; 2006 major junior rookie of the year, 2007 major junior player of the year; two world juniors, named 2009 all-star, top forward and MVP.

7. Sidney Crosby, Rimouski, QMJHL 120 goals, 303 points in 121 games; two-time major junior player of the year; silver and gold with Canada at two world juniors.

6. Eric Lindros, Oshawa, OHL 97 goals, 216 points in 95 games; one Memorial Cup victory; three world junior tournaments; major junior player of the year in 1991.

5. Mike Bossy, Laval, Q…

Greatest Hockey Legends: M