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Building the perfect #NYR team -'88-present -fwds complete-Pronman rankings

August 17, 2018, 9:31 AM ET [4 Comments]
Jan Levine
New York Rangers Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
We have complete our selection of the perfect Rangers team from 1988-present, at least the forwards. Two weeks ago, the voting kicked off by picking the first line center, right and left winger for two teams followed up by the second, third and fourth lines as well as line combinations. The results are below and let me know in the comments if who was selected matches your choices. It be interesting to see how the general consensus compares to each of our selections.

A few reminders :

1) Cut off for eligibility was 170 games or two-plus seasons as a Ranger, but I have used some leeway in a several instances. Once we got past the first liners, a substantive number of players that were options for the second and to a certain extent third line skated in far less than 170 games, so used 110 games as the cut off point. This number was slightly modified for line combinations.

2) Selections were to be based on their production and role in New York, not output while with other teams

Forward line selections for all four lines and the first and second team based on the vote:

First team:
Adam Graves-Mark Messier-Jaromir Jagr
Tony Granato-Petr Nedved-Theo Fleury
Esa Tikkanen-Sergei Nemchinov-Sean Avery
Brandon Prust-Brian Boyle-Jesper Fast

(I kept Avery in, based on his early play in New York. Following his departure and return, his play tailed off dramatically. I am still open to thoughts here as debated replacing Avery with Michael Grabner, who is on the second team below and sliding Niklas Sundstrom, who I think was far better player into the second team. Let me know your thoughts as this may be a change I make)

Second team:
Alexei Kovalev-Wayne Gretzky-Mike Gartner
Brandon Dubinsky-Doug Weight-Tomas Sandstrom
Carl Hagelin-Derick Brassard-Michael Grabner
Darren Langdon-Dominic Moore-Joe Kocur

Line combinations:
Graves-Messier-Kovalev
Fleury-Lindros-York (FLY line)
Tikkanen-Nemchinov-Matteau
Gilbert-MacTavish-Kocur

Straka-Nylander-Jagr
Dubinsky-Stepan-Callahan (the Young Americans)
Zuccarello-Brassard-Pouliot
Dorsett-Moore-Boyle

The intersection between 1994 and other squads is interesting. The first team had four members of that squad while the second had three but Gartner and Weight were utilized to add two members to that team. To me, the teams put together by the line combinations would give the first and second teams selected by vote a run for their money. Because of the slightly more lax parameters to select those trios, to me the third and fourth line combinations on the second team exceed the first team and who was picked by position for the first two teams.

The next step will be to move on to the blueliners. Please provide me any names that you like to suggest. As a reminder, this is about putting duos together, so the vote will be based on where those players played while in NY. Meaning that listing Sergei Zubov or James Patrick on the third pairing so they get voted onto the team is not in line with their roles on the Rangers. Both were first, or at worst, second pair blueliners during their stints in New York.

Corey Pronman ranked the Rangers' minor-league system 11th after rating the team 29th last season. Below is the breakdown by prospect class. What is noticeable by how many of these names were brought over in the past 14 months or so. Pronman notes that the Rangers are tied with the Flyers, who are ranked 12th, for the second deepest farm system.

High End - Filip Chytil
Very Good - Vitali Kravtsov
Legit - Lias Andersson, Igor Shestyorkin, Brett Howden, K'Andre Miller
Have a chance - Libor Hajek, Yegor Rykov, Nils Lundkvist, Olof Lindblom, Adam Huska, Joey Keane, Tim Gettinger, Ty Ronning, Alexander Georgiev, Rily Huhes and Ryan Gropp
Depth Notes - Sean Day, Ryan Lindgren, Calle Sjalin, Nico Gross and Vinni Lettieri

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