Big Red selects Don "Bones" Raleigh, the two-year Rangers captain who went to two NHL all-star games and scored a couple of then record playoff goals: the year after being team MVP he became the team's playoff MVP, scoring a then unprecedented back-to-back overtime playoff game-winning goals in Games 4 and 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals, only to lose the series in seven to the same Red Wings team that beat them two postseasons prior. Two years later he set a Rangers record for assists in a season with 42, finishing 4th in NHL points and winning the NYR's first fan club trophy as the most popular player after leading the Blueshirts in points for two seasons. He would go on to have led the team in assists four times and retire in 1956 after nearly 10 seasons with 320 points in 535 NHL games. He was tall and thin, known for his stickhandling, speed and shiftiness. He was hard to hit and good on the forecheck, recovering pucks deep. He centered a line renowned for stifling Rocket Richard in an upset during their cup run of 1950. He left the NHL at age 29 when coaches expected more hitting, contrary to his style of play. He still holds the Rangers record for fastest three assists, recorded in 1 minute, 10 seconds during the 1947-48 season.
Originally Posted by Edmonton Journal Oct. 19, 1943
Commenting on Raleigh, who has been a sensation in pre-season workouts here, Patrick said he was the nearest thing to his former forward line star, Phil Watson, he's seen.
"He moves around in the same helter-skelter fashion as Phil," Patrick said. "And he can also skate like the blazes."
Originally Posted by Saskatoon Star-Phoenix Oct 23, 1943
"Raleigh is the sweetest rookie I have looked at for quite a few seasons," Patrick said. "In fact, he's a jewel."
"He's a better player at 17 than Phil Watson was at 20 . . ." the veteran New York manager said. "He really flashes around on the blades, and he's here, there and everywhere. If he doesn't click I'll be very disappointed."
Coach [Frank] Boucher also goes out on the limb for Raleigh...
Originally Posted by The Leader-Post Sept 13, 1949
Don Raleigh, stick-handling expert of New York Rangers team...
Originally Posted by The Montreal Gazette Apr 11, 1950
The surprise of the Canadiens-Rangers series was the work of the Rangers' attacking lines. Don Raleigh looked like one of the league's better pivotmen in that series, and it may be that he inspired both Ed Slowinski and Pentti Lund. Anyway, this line was a standout and if it is half as effective against the Red Wings, it will give the latter plenty of trouble.
Originally Posted by Saskatoon Star-Phoenix Feb 12, 1954
[Rangers coach Muzz Patrick]"Raleigh's forechecking throughout was wonderful. He kept the pressure on Detroit all night. He's done that well for us right along, but last night he played his best game of the season."
Raleigh didn't score any goals or get credit for any assists but the mere fact that he kept a team like the Red Wings off balance for a fair part of the game should be enough to convince the skeptics.
Originally Posted by Ottawa Citizen Mar 30, 2008
"What I remember when we were down 3-2 was that we had a big meeting in Toledo, where we stayed during the playoffs," Pronovost said. "[Sid] Abel was (defenceman Black Jack Stewart’s) roommate. Bones Raleigh was playing for New York and he was Sid’s check. Jack said, ‘Don Raleigh is making a fool out of you.’
"I remember Sid said, ‘I was afraid to go to bed that night.’"
Originally Posted by The Globe and Mail Aug 25, 2012
The Rangers finished fourth in the 1949-50 season and were underdogs heading into the playoffs. Raleigh centred a line with Pentti Lund and Ed Slowinski, who kept Rocket Richard off the scorecard while netting goals of their own. The Rangers eliminated Montreal to face the Red Wings in the finals.
Originally Posted by New York Times Aug 23, 2012
Raleigh’s signature moments came in April 1950, when the Rangers met the Detroit Red Wings for the Stanley Cup championship. The Rangers had to play all their games on the road — five in Detroit and two on neutral ice in Toronto — with the circus at Madison Square Garden.
Raleigh scored the winning goals in the first overtime period at Detroit’s Olympia arena in Games 4 and 5.
“I’ve always said the best shot in hockey is a one-timer — shooting the puck right off the pass,” he told John Halligan and John Kreiser in the oral history “Game of My Life: New York Rangers” (2006). Raleigh recalled that both his overtime goals came on just that kind of shot.
Raleigh’s feat in the finals was unmatched until 1993, when John LeClair of the Montreal Canadiens scored in two consecutive games against the Los Angeles Kings.
Originally Posted by New York Times Aug 25, 2012
“I knew how to collapse my body so that when guys hit me, I didn’t get hurt,” Raleigh told John Halligan and John Kreiser in the 2006 oral history “Game of My Life: New York Rangers.”
“Bones Raleigh was the quintessential antihero,” said the hockey historian and commentator Stan Fischler... “He was an intellectual; he would write poetry on the Staten Island Ferry,” Fischler said. “He would get the puck behind his net and just wend his way up ice on spectacular rushes. Problem was, Bones being so skinny, by the time he got inside the enemy zone, he was usually body checked. But we didn’t mind because he was our guy.”
“You couldn’t hit him,” said Chuck Scherza, who played alongside Raleigh on the wartime Rangers. “He was fast, a great skater and he could stickhandle so well. I knew he’d make it.”
Both also recalled him as a dedicated player who convened his teammates at the Belvedere for pregame strategy talks, a quality that helped elevate him to the Rangers captaincy from 1953 to 1955.
... the emphasis under the new Rangers’ coach, Phil Watson, was being revised away from finesse, as it was throughout the game.
“Watson wanted us to be physical and run around and hit people and get hit,” Raleigh said in 2006. “That wasn’t for me, so after 1955-56, I left.”
Howell said: “We were all disappointed when he left. He’d been our mentor for a couple of years.”
LW Steve Payne
G Pelle Lindbergh
D Jason Smith
D Christian Ehrhoff (I know it was controversial last year, but I'm not seeing why he's not a power-play specialist, bottom pair MLD defenseman at this point. Especially after his most recent season: http://canucksarmy.com/2013/4/16/for...win-the-norris)
He really was a multi genre talent. Even as a bee gee, he covered a wide range of musical styles.
Originally Posted by Hedberg
LW Steve Payne
G Pelle Lindbergh...[/URL])
Much music criticism is based on a perceived coolness factor. I may not be a fan of the Bee Gees' Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, but it exhibits more musicianship and songwriting than the Sex Pistols. The Sex Pistols were more a political statement/punkrock movement. This is not a John Lydon slam as I am a fan of PiL. I was planning on taking Lindbergh if jkrx green lit it.
I have Ruskowski as C/LW because, while usually a center, he played LW in his last four seasons of his 14 year career. I wouldn't say making him a lw is bad, I'd do it based on four seasons too (in a pinch), but let's list him as what he really is.