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Former New York Rangers Competing in the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs

Taking a look at former Blueshirts, players and coaches, who are fighting for the Stanley Cup.

Washington Capitals v Philadelphia Flyers Photo by Chase Agnello-Dean/NHLI via Getty Images

The New York Rangers may not have made it to the post-season this year following a three-game sweep by the Carolina Hurricanes in the qualifying round. However, many former Blueshirts and both previous head coaches are currently fighting for a chance at being Stanley Cup Champions.

Philadelphia FlyersKevin Hayes (2014-2019), Alain Vigneault (2013-2018)

Forward Kevin Hayes signed with New York in August 2014 as a college free agent after opting not to sign with Chicago, who selected him 24th overall in 2010. After five seasons in New York, Hayes was dealt to the Jets in exchange for Brendan Lemieux, a conditional first-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft, and a conditional pick in the 2022 NHL Draft. After finishing out the 2018-19 season with Winnipeg, Hayes’ rights were traded to the Philadelphia Flyers at the end of the season and he subsequently signed a seven-year deal. He scored 23 goals (just two short of his career high) and added 18 assists in the 69 games he played during the regular season (Hockey-Reference).

Vigneault wrapped up his first season in Philadelphia after a year off following his tenure with the Rangers, whom he led to the franchise’s first Stanley Cup Final in 2014. Vigneault led the team to the Presidents Trophy the following season before the team took a turn, leading to his dismissal in April 2018. Prior to the pause due to the pandemic, the Flyers had a record of 41-21-7.

Montreal Canadiens- Dale Weise (New York Rangers 2010-11)

New York Rangers v New Jersey Devils Photo by Paul Bereswill/Getty Images

Tampa Bay Lightning – Ryan McDonagh (2010-2018), Kevin Shattenkirk (2017-2019)

Tampa Bay Lightning v Minnesota Wild Photo by Bruce Kluckhohn/NHLI via Getty Images

Ryan McDonagh began playing with the Rangers on an entry-level contract in 2010. The defenseman played only 38 games in the AHL before joining the roster full-time. He was named the 27th team captain in the franchise on October 6th, 2014. This also made McDonagh the fourth youngest captain in the team’s history. Three seasons later, he was traded to the Tampa Bay Lighting before the 2018 trade deadline with J.T. Miller for Libor Hajek, Brett Howden, a first-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft, as well as a conditional pick in the 2019 NHL Draft. On June 1st, 2018, McDonagh signed a seven-year contract extension with the Lightning. During this past regular season, he scored one goal and made eleven assists out of the 50 games he played (Hockey-Reference).

Defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk signed a four-year contract with the Blueshirts in July of 2017, having grown-up rooting for them in New Rochelle. He had a knee injury which hurt his first season with the Rangers, ultimately being bought out by them after his second season and signing with the Lighting last August as a free agent. In the 70 games he played of the regular season, he has 8 goals and 26 assists (Hockey-Reference).

Columbus Blue Jackets – John Tortorella (2009-2015)

2012 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic - New York Rangers v Philadelphia Flyers Photo by Dave Sandford/NHLI via Getty Images

John Tortorella was named head coach of the New York Rangers in February of 2009. During the 2009 Stanley Cup playoffs, he was suspended by the NHL for an altercation where he physically responded to a heckling fan sitting behind the Rangers’ bench. He led the team to the playoffs in four of the five seasons he spent on Broadway, being fired just days after they were eliminated by the Boston Bruins from the Stanley Cup playoffs. About a month later, he was hired by the Vancouver Canucks who had just fired Alain Vigneault, basically switching head coaches. However, the Canucks missed the playoffs for the first time since 2008 and Tortorella was fired again. He was hired by the Columbus Blue Jackets on October 21st, 2015 and has been the head coach there ever since.

Washington Capitals- Carl Hagelin (2012-2015)

Washington Capitals v Philadelphia Flyers Photo by Mark Blinch/NHLI via Getty Images

The Swedish native was drafted by the Rangers in the sixth-round of the 2007 NHL Draft. He was called up after 17 games in the AHL, being named Rookie Showcase and winning the Fastest Skater Competition at the 2012 NHL All-Star Weekend. Hagelin played 266 games and scored 130 points while playing on Broadway, but was traded to the Anaheim Ducks at the end of the 2014-15 season. Only 43 games later, he was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins where he won two Stanley Cup Championships with them. After being traded to the Los Angeles Kings on November 21st, 2018, he was traded again to the Washington Capitals by the 2019 trade deadline. He scored his 100th career goal with the Capitals only two days later. Prior to the pause, Hagelin scored eight goals and made 17 assists during the 58 regular season games played (Hockey-Reference).

New York IslandersDerick Brassard (2013-2018)

Montreal Canadiens v New York Rangers - Game Six Photo by Scott Levy/NHLI via Getty Images

Derick Brassard was traded to the Blueshirts by the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2013, with Derek Dorsett, John Moore and Columbus’ sixth-round pick in the 2014 NHL Draft, for Marian Gaborik, Blake Parlett and Steven Delisle. Brassard helped the team make it to the 2014 Stanley Cup Final with 45 regular season points and 12 points in the playoffs. Again, he helped his team make a run to the 2015 Eastern Conference Final, gaining a NHL career-high of 60 points. With the Rangers wanting to rebuild with younger players, he was traded to the Ottawa Senators with a seventh-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft for Mika Zibanejad, plus Ottawa’s second-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft. Brassard went on to play for Vegas, Pittsburgh, Florida, and Colorado, before signing as a free agent with the New York Islanders last August. He recorded 32 points this season, with 10 goals and 22 assists over 66 games (Hockey-Reference).

Carolina Hurricanes – Brady Skjei (2016-2020)

Carolina Hurricanes v Boston Bruins - Game One Photo by Chase Agnello-Dean/NHLI via Getty Images

The 26 year-old defenseman was selected in the first round of the 2012 NHL Draft by the Rangers. He played for the Hartford Wolf Pack, the Rangers’ AHL team, before joining the team roster in the 2016-17 season. Skjei signed a six-year deal with the Rangers in 2018 but was traded at this year’s trade deadline to the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for a first-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft. Out of the 60 games he played in his Broadway Blues this past season, he was able to score 8 goals and make 15 assists. He only played seven games as a Hurricane during the regular season and four playoff games, three of which were against his old teammates from Broadway.

Las Vegas Golden KnightsNick Holden (New York Rangers 2016- 2018)

Chicago Blackhawks v Vegas Golden Knights - Game Two Photo by Andy Devlin/NHLI via Getty Images

Colorado AvalancheVladislav Namestnikov (New York Rangers 2018 – 2019)

New York Rangers v Nashville Predators Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images

Arizona Coyotes- Michael Grabner (New York Rangers 2016- 2018), Derek Stepan, Antti Raanta (New York Rangers 2015 – 2017)

New York Rangers v Philadelphia Flyers Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images

The Rangers’ chose Derek Stepan in the second-round of the 2008 NHL Draft. He started on Broadway in 2010, scoring three goals thus getting a hat trick in his first game. Stepan became the fourth player in NHL history to score three or more goals in their first game. In July of 2015, he signed a six-year contract with the Blueshirts but was traded two seasons later to the Arizona Coyotes, along with goalie Antti Raanta, for Tony DeAngelo and a first-round pick in the 2017 NHL Draft. With that first-round pick, the Rangers chose Lias Anderson. Prior to that start of his first season as a Coyote, Stepan was named an alternate captain. In the regular season, he scored ten goals and made 18 assists throughout 70 games (Hockey-Reference).

Calgary FlamesCam Talbot (2013-2015)

Calgary Flames v Dallas Stars - Game Two Photo by Dave Sandford/NHLI via Getty Images

The Canadian goalie, Cam Talbot, signed with the Blueshirts as an undrafted free agent in March of 2010. He began the 2014-15 season as the backup goalie to Henrik Lundqvist, but became the temporary starting goalie while Lundqvist was out with a ruptured blood vessel in his neck during February of 2015. Talbot went 16-4-3 during that run and won the Steve McDonald Extra Effort Award. Shortly after, he was traded to the Edmonton Oilers for three second-round draft picks in the 2015 NHL Draft. Edmonton traded him to the Philadelphia Flyers before he was finally signed by the Calgary last July. Talbot played 26 games in the regular season, having a save percentage of .919% and goals-against average of 2.63 (Hockey-Reference). He started in this past Tuesday night’s playoff game, where he made 24 saves in the 3-2 win over the Dallas Stars.

Vancouver Canucks- J.T. Miller (2014-2018)

New York Rangers v Philadelphia Flyers - Game Six

J.T. Miller was selected by the Rangers in the first-round of the 2011 NHL Draft. Although the 15th overall pick did not make it to the roster full-time until the 2014-15 season, he did record a multi-goal game during his NHL debut. He was the first Ranger to do that since Alexei Kovalev in 1992. Miller played for the Rangers until 2018, when he was traded with Ryan McDonagh to Tampa Bay, where he ended up scoring his first career hat trick. A little over a year later, Miller was traded to the Vancouver Canucks during the 2019 NHL Draft for Marek Mazanec, Vancouver’s third-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft, and a conditional first-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft. He scored his 100th career goal in October of 2019. During the 69 regular season games he played, he scored 27 goals while making 45 assists (Hockey-Reference).