Happy Anniversary Rangers’ fans! It was on this very day 15 years ago that 54 years of misery ended and the team captured its first Stanley Cup since 1940. As our spiritual leader, Sam Rosen, exclaimed that night, “This one will last a lifetime.” And it seems like it had better because the Rangers have spent these intervening 15 years never doing the serious work of rebuilding another championship contender.
Yes, there are certainly pieces of a championship team on the current roster. Henrik Lundqvist is one of the best goalies in the game. Ryan Callahan is a dynamic young player. But, there are far too many players who are earning huge salaries and contributing very little, a deadly combination in the era of the salary cap.
Sadly, Rangers management seems completely detached from reality. Glen Sather continues to run the club despite his many missteps as GM. In these harsh economic times, the Rangers have even taken the unusual step of raising ticket prices. Sather vowed in a letter to season ticket holders that the Rangers, “are determined to add players who make significant contributions in 2009-10, enabling us to dictate the pace of the game on a regular basis.” How he will do this with the severe salary cap limitations the team has remains to be seen.
But, let’s leave all of that for another day. Today let’s remember that glorious day 15 years ago when we all sat on the edge of our seats and saw our ultimate hockey dream come true. We may never have another day like it.