Marc Staal is one of the most iconic Rangers of the salary cap era. While he is not a particularly flashy defenseman, he was a fan favorite because of the hardnose way he plays the game and his consistent defensive stability. Now, the 36-year-old is within touching distance of the Stanley Cup as he looks to join his brothers Jordan and Eric in getting his name etched into history on the holy grail of the Hockey World.
In 2014, Marc Staal was one of the core pieces that came oh so close in the Rangers’ venture to the Stanley Cup final. As we all painfully remember, it did not have the storybook ending that the Blueshirt faithful had been hoping for. We all painfully remember the Alec Martinez goal. Watching the LA Kings celebrate as King Henrik lay on the ice, the pain we all felt after the cup was clinched.
As this incredible Florida Panthers story continues, Marc looks to do what he could not do in the Big Apple. 999 regular season and playoff games with the Blueshirts and Marc Staal could not help the Rangers bring back the most iconic trophy in this sport. It was not his fault. One of the things that makes Staal so beloved is that he would do anything to win. Whether it is laying a hit, giving up the body, taking a slap shot from the point, or anything it takes.
Staal still sits sixth all-time in regular-season appearances for the Rangers. While he is not the player he was the last time he made the Stanley Cup Finals almost a decade ago, there are many people that would love to see one of the fan favorites in the salary cap era get over the hump and finally grab Lord Stanley for himself. There’s a very real chance for this Florida Panthers team too.