NHL New York Rangers

The Top 5 Post Lockout (2005) New York Rangers Players

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Top 5 Post Lockout (2005) Players For the Rangers

James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers have one of the most storied franchises in the history of the NHL. Being an original six team, they have been around since the beginning of the NHL.

The Rangers enjoyed a lot of success in the early days. They won three Stanley Cups from 1926 to 1940. But as most Rangers fans know, they went on a 54-year drought after that. They were still a competitive team, but could never get over the hump of winning a championship. They lost twice to the Bobby Orr led Bruins in the 1970s. For the next 20 years they could still not reach hockey’s ultimate goal of winning Lord Stanley’s hardware.

Finally, the Rangers made a big splash in order to bring the Cup back to New York. They traded for Mark Messier in 1991. Even though they won the President’s trophy in the 1991-92 season, they could not win the Cup once again. That all changed in 1994, when the Rangers captured their first Stanley Cup in 54 years. They did it behind stellar play from Messier, great goaltending form Mike Richter and good coaching from Mike Keenan.

Since 1994, the Rangers have not made it back to the Stanley Cup finals. Before the 2005 lockout they began to bring in expensive aging players, which crippled their youth. The season before the lockout, general manager Glen Sather decided it was time to rebuild the team.

Since the 2005 lockout, the Rangers have enjoyed success being a perennial playoff team. They have done this by drafting well and signing solid free agents. There have been many great players to play on the team since the 2005 lockout but here are the top five.

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5.) Dan Girardi

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Dan Girardi was an undrafted free agent steal by Glen Sather. He has blossomed into one of the top shutdown defenseman in the NHL. He fits in perfectly with current coach John Tortorella's system. He led the league in blocked shots last year and is one of the best penalty killers in the league.

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4.) Martin Straka

James Lang-USA TODAY Sports

Martin Straka was a gifted playmaker for the New York Rangers. Brought in as a free agent, he elevated the play of a lot of younger players and taught them what it takes to win in the league. He was a big boost for the Rangers power play and always made slick passes.

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3.) Ryan Callahan

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Ryan Callahan is one of, if not the, hardest working players in the NHL. Named as the captain before the 2011-12 season, he leads by example and has blossomed into one of the best two-way forwards in the game. He learned a lot of his skills from former Rangers captain Chris Drury.

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2.) Jaromir Jagr

James Lang-USA TODAY Sports

The ageless wonder, Jaromir Jagr was a scoring machine with the New York Rangers. He was named the captain of the Rangers after the 2005 lockout. He broke the single season point record for the Rangers and helped get them back to the playoffs after a long hiatus.

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1.) Henrik Lundqvist

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Henrik Lundqvist has been the New York Rangers best player every year since he joined the team. The man single-handedly wins games for this team. He is nicknamed "The King" for this reason. His play reached its finest when he was named the 2012-13 Vezina Trophy winner for best goaltender.