TALE OF THE TAPE

Tale Of The Tape: 2014 Rangers Vs. 1994 Rangers

The Rangers are back in the Stanley Cup Final for the first time in 20 years. A lot has changed since then – other than Martin Brodeur, Jaromir Jagr and Teemu Selanne, that is. We’ll take a closer look at the two Blueshirt squads and see how they stack up.

These Rangers
Those Rangers
Henrik Lundqvist. He's the man. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
You can touch the Cup AFTER you've won it. Mark Messier knows this. (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
Henrik Lundqvist. He's the man. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
You can touch the Cup AFTER you've won it. Mark Messier knows this. (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
CAPTAIN
Former captain Ryan Callahan was shipped off to Tampa Bay at the deadline, so the Rangers don’t have one. Three players – Brad Richards, Dan Girardi, and Marc Staal – are designated as the team’s alternate captains.
Winner Mark Messier. They named a leadership award after him for a reason. Anyone who was a Rangers fan in ’94 knows why.
GOALIE
Winner Henrik Lundqvist. In my opinion, he’s the best goaltender in the world right now. Just broke the franchise record for most playoff wins. Slight edge over Richter, talent-wise.
Mike Richter. As of this moment, he has one advantage over Lundqvist – a Stanley Cup. That aside, his days as best goaltender in Rangers history are over.
POINTS LEADER
Mats Zuccarello. Racked up 59 points; respectable production for a second line player, very unimpressive amount for a team’s scoring leader.
Winner Sergei Zubov. Led the Rangers with 89 points AS A DEFENSEMAN on a team that included Mark Messier and Adam Graves.
LEADING GOAL SCORER
Rick Nash. Scored 26 goals, had an up-and-down year coming off a concussion. I think he’s more talented than Graves was, but he didn’t play his best hockey this year.
Winner Adam Graves. Filled the net 52 times. This year, the Rangers’ top two goal-scoring wingers (Nash, Zuccarello) combined for 45.
TOP DEFENSEMAN
Ryan McDonagh. Quickly becoming one of the best all-around defensemen in the NHL and is unquestionably the anchor of this Rangers defense.
Winner Brian Leetch. Recorded 79 points and helped the Rangers win a Cup while en route to a Hall-of-Fame career. Eons ahead.
TROUBLEMAKER
Derek Dorsett. He’ll drop the gloves without the slightest hesitation. Like everyone else on the Rangers, he used to play for the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Winner Jeff Beukeboom. His name alone struck fear in his opponents. If you got in his way, (Beuke) boom went the dynamite.
HEAD COACH
Alain Vigneault. History of playoff failure in Vancouver, but has learned from his mistakes and done a wonderful job with this Rangers team.
Winner Mike Keenan. “Iron Mike” knew how to do two things: Push buttons and win. Sometimes you didn’t like which (or whose) buttons he pushed, but you couldn’t argue with the results.
NOTABLE MIDSEASON ACQUISITION
Winner Martin St. Louis. The trade was very controversial at the time but I thought it was a great move from the get-go. He was the goal-scorer the Rangers desperately needed, not to mention a proven winner and a leader.
Stephane Matteau. Helped give the Rangers more depth and grit, ultimately scored one of the biggest goals in team history.

The Winner Is

You can touch the Cup AFTER you've won it. Mark Messier knows this. (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
Winner Those Rangers
6 out of 8

Deeper, more talented, more poised. Even their healthy scratches were better. Slightly worse in net, but that’s about as far as it goes.

-- Daniel Friedman, CBS New York contributor

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