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New York Rangers
Team Page | 2000-2001 Schedule | Roster | 1999-2000 Player Stats
On this page: Comings | Goings | Prospect Watch | Get the Highlighter | Quoteworthy

 
1999-2000 Stat Leaders
Stat  Leader  No. 
Goals  Michael York  26 
Assists  Theoren Fleury  49 
Points  Petr Nedved  68 
+/-  John Hlavac 
Shots  Theoren Fleury  246 
Ice Time (F)  Petr Nedved  19:53 
Ice Time (D)  Brian Leetch  26:56 
Faceoff Pct.  Tim Taylor  58.36 
Hits  Sylvain Lefebvre  181 
PP Pts  Petr Nedved  21 
   Theoren Fleury  21 
SH Pts  Petr Nedved 
   Radek Dvorak 
 

"Broadway flop." "Close the curtain." "If this were a show, it would have been shut down the first week." These are only a few of the scathing reviews the Rangers received during and after the1999-2000 season. The most damning words, though, came from MSG president Dave Checketts the day he fired GM Neil Smith and head coach John Muckler. "The team has underachieved and frankly embarrassed the franchise. There's not enough leadership and not enough pride in being Rangers."

What to do? Well, you bring back, as the hyperbolic call him, "the greatest leader in professional sports," Mark Messier. (Log onto www.newyorkrangers.com and see for yourself the importance of Messier's return in Ranger Nation.) When the former and current captain was signed he guaranteed-as the tears fell down his cheeks-to patch up the holes in this money pit and take it to the playoffs.

While Messier takes on the job of policing the roster, the task of filling it out now falls to new GM Glen Sather, architect of the Oilers and keeper of the small-market flame. But no more. The Big Apple is the brightest stage with the hottest lights. Also squarely in the glare: new head coach Ron Low.

For more on the Rangers, bookmark this page and check back Wednesday, Oct. 11 for a Sports Illustrated Scouting Report.

BRIGHT SPOTS   GRAY AREAS
  • Glen Sather is one of the most respected men in the NHL.
  • Low should open things up in the offense.
  • Good rookie seasons from Mike York (26 goals in 1999-2000 to lead all rookies), Jan Hlavac (19 goals, tied for third among rookies) and Kim Johnsson (third among rookie defensemen with points).
  • More youngsters coming. Junior scoring machine Pavel Brendl, Hobey Baker winner Mike Mottau and forward Jamie Lundmark were given the chance to stick with the big club.
  • Some inspiring wins last season -- in OT, where the Rangers went 6-3-12 (4-1-5 at home), and a 9-1-0, save-the-coach stretch in January.
  •  
  • Mike Richter, who had surgery on his torn ACL in April, will miss the team's season opener. Backup Kirk McLean went 7-8-1 with a 2.89 GAA last season.
  • Can Theo Fleury make good on his promise for a better season? He ranked second on the team in points, but you don't shell out $8.5-mil for 15 goals.
  • Manny Malhotra's development suffered among last season's graybeard glut, and will continue to do so as long as he's in Hartford. Same goes for Brendl and Lundmark, who made the same long trip up to central Connecticut at the end of camp.
  • Valeri Kamensky's 13 goals, 32 points and minus-12 were nearly as embarrassing as Fleury's numbers.
  • The last thing the Rangers need is an enigmatic defenseman, which describes Vladimir Malakhov, no matter what his sympathizers said during the playoffs last year.
  • Youngsters may be too small and too green.
  • Comings
    Player  Pos.  From  Via 
    Derek Armstrong  N.Y. Rangers  Re-signed 
    Jason Dawe  N.Y. Rangers  Re-signed 
    Eric Lacroix  LW  N.Y. Rangers  Re-signed 
    Vladimir Malakhov  New Jersey  Free agent 
    Sandy McCarthy  LW  Carolina  Trade 
    Mark Messier  Vancouver  Free agent 
    Martin Richter  Saipa (Finland)  Free agent 
    Jeff Ulmer  RW  Houston (IHL)  Free agent 
    David Wilkie  N.Y. Rangers  Re-signed 
     
    Goings
    Player  Pos.  To  Via 
    Jeff Beukeboom  Retired    
    Rob DiMaio  LW  Carolina  Trade 
    Kevin Hatcher  Carolina  Free agent 
    Milan Hnilicka  Atlanta  Free agent 
    Darren Langdon  LW  Carolina  Trade 
    Mathieu Schneider  Columbus  Expansion 
    Kevin Stevens  LW  Philadelphia  Free agent 
    P.J. Stock  LW  Montreal  Free agent 
    Dmitri Subbotin  LW  Columbus  Expansion  
    Chris Wells  Dallas  Free agent 
     
    Prospect Watch
    Pavel Brendl, RW, 6' 1", 205
    Born: March 23, 1981 in Opocno, Czech Republic
    Acquired: 1999 entry draft (No. 4 overall)

    Led the Calagary Hitmen and the Western Hockey League with 134 points (73 goals and 61 assists) and plus-68 rating. Also scored 21 goals and 46 points in 20 postseason games, en route to the Memorial Cup finals. Showed up at last season's training camp a little too chubby. He came into 2000-01 with a better result in mind, but will still begin the season in Hartford.

    Get the Highlighter
    Saturday, Oct. 7 at Atlanta. Season opens in Atlanta in a battle of last season's most disappointing teams.
    Wednesday, Nov. 29 at New Jersey. It may be Jersey, but it's also Stanley Cup territory so it will be interesting to see which team draws a bigger crowd to the Meadowlands for this one.
    Wednesday, March 28 and Thursday March 29, vs. New York Islanders and at New York Islanders. Schedule-makers get an A+ for booking this one: A home-and-home down the stretch that may have playoff implications for these bitter cross-town rivals.

    Quoteworthy
    "Timing is of the essence in life. I believe the Rangers have a team that should win the Stanley Cup and I want to have something to do with it. That's why I was instrumental in getting [Messier]. We have always had a great relationship. I know that at 39 he's in better shape than when he was 25. He's like a Gordie Howe. And you know how great Gordie Howe was."
    —Glen Sather

    Team-by-team previews compiled by CNNSI.com's Ken Klavon, Jamie MacDonald and Jimmy Traina.


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