Drafting Hall of Famers is not a Rangers’ strength

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new york rangers

Brad Park #2 of the New York Rangers (Photo by Melchior DiGiacomo/Getty Images)

When we did our story about the best players from each draft round for the Rangers, we came up with an interesting number.  Three.  That’s how many Hall of Fame players the New York Rangers have drafted among the 545 players that they have selected since 1963.

The three immortals are Brian Leetch, Brad Park and Sergei Zubov, all defensemen. That number will grow to four when Henrik Lundqvist is inevitably inducted into the Hall, but even four seemed like a pretty small total. We took a took at the rest of the teams in the NHL to see how they compare and found some interesting results.

We’ve divided the teams based on when they entered the league.  We’ve listed all of the players drafted who ended up in the Hall of Fame.  We’ve also listed some possible future inductees.  Our list of possible Hall of Famers is pretty liberal, so we put the sure things first and they are in bold type.

Remember, these are Hall of Famers drafted by teams.  They didn’t necessarily play for the teams that picked them.

Original Six teams

Looking at the Original Six, amazingly, only two teams drafted more Hall of Fame players than the three by the Rangers.  Montreal drafted a stunning nine eventual Hall of Fame members and most of them played much of their careers with the Canadiens. Detroit drafted four players who are in the Hall.

Like the Rangers, Chicago and Boston have drafted only three Hall of Fame players and, believe it or not, the Toronto Maple Leafs have drafted only two.  Look at Boston.  The only HOF player who actually played for them was Ray Bourque.  The other two (Mark Howe and Ken Dryden) played their HOF careers elsewhere.

New York Rangers (3): Brian Leetch, Brad Park, Sergei Zubov

Possibles: Henrik Lundqvist, Tony Amonte, Rick Middleton, Mike Richter, Doug Weight

With Lundqvist, the Rangers’ number will jump to four but that will be fewer than their counterparts who have some players destined for the Hall.

Montreal Canadiens (9):   Guy Carbonneau, Chris Chelios, Vachislav Fetisov, Bob Gainey, Guy Lafleur, Rod Langway, Larry Robinson. Patrick Roy, Steve Schutt

Possibles: Carey Price, Saku Koivu, Andrei Markov, P.K. Subban

Detroit  Red Wings (4):  Marcel Dionne, Sergei Federov, Niklas LIdstrom,  Steve Yzerman

Possibles: Pavel Datsyuk, Pete Mahovlich, Chris Osgood, Henrik Zetterberg

Chicago Blackhawks (3):  Dominick Hasek,  Denis Savard, Doug Wilson

Possibles: Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith , Ed Olczyk,  Jeremy Roenick, Darryl Sutter,  Jonathan Toews

Boston Bruins (3):   Ray Bourque,  Ken Dryden, Mark Howe

Possibles:  Joe Thornton, Patrice Bergeron, Phil Kessel,Brad Marchand

Toronto Maple Leafs (2):    Lanny McDonald, Darryl Sittler

Possibles: Vincent Damphousse, Mitch Marner, Auston Matthews, Tukka Rask

The Original Six had the benefit of participating in drafts since 1963, the most of all NHL teams.  From 1963 to 1966,  only two Hall of Fame players were drafted,  Ken Dryden and Brad Park.  Next up, a look at the teams that began drafting in 1967 when the league expanded for the first time.

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