Rod Gilbert, the Montreal-born Hall of Fame forward and adopted New York son fondly known as Mr. Ranger, has died, the team announced Sunday. He was 80.
Gilbert, the franchise’s all-time leader in goals (406) and points (1,021) and the first NHL player to have his jersey (No. 7) retired at Madison Square Garden, spent his entire 18-year career in a starring role for the Blueshirts from 1960-78.
The eight-time All-Star played right wing on the Rangers’ famed GAG line (Goal-a-Game) alongside left wing Vic Hadfield and center Jean Ratelle. That unit led the Rangers to an appearance in the 1972 Stanley Cup Finals – with Gilbert posting a career-best 43 goals and 97 points during the regular season – but they lost to the Boston Bruins in six games as part of the 54-year championship drought that didn’t end until 1994.
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