Rangers to retire Jean Ratelle's No. 19 this season

The center spent almost 16 full seasons with the Blueshirts.
Jean Ratelle will have his number retired by the Rangers on February 25. (Photo: Getty Images)

The New York Rangers announced on Monday that they will retire the No. 19 jersey of Jean Ratelle on February 25, 2018 at Madison Square Garden when the Blueshirts take on the Detroit Red Wings. 

 

Ratelle spent 15-plus seasons with the Rangers from 1960-1975 as his name is scattered all along the franchise's record books. 

 

He ranks second with 336 goals behind Rod Gilbert, third with 481 assists behind Brian Leetch and Gilbert and also third with 817 points. 

 

Ratelle and Gilbert were two-thirds of the Rangers' famed "Goal-A-Game" line that also featured Vic Hadfield.

 

The Canadian eclipsed the 40-goal mark twice with the Rangers, which just so happened to come in successive seasons in 1971-72 and 1972-73.

He also eclipsed the 100-point mark in 1971-72, the same year he helped lead the Rangers to a Stanley Cup Final appearance against the Boston Bruins. They would lose in six games. 

Considered one of the good guys on the ice, Ratelle won four Lady Byng Trophies for his sportsmanship while exhibiting a high level of skill and the Bill Masterton Trophy once for perseverance and sportsmanship.

“Jean Ratelle is truly one of the greatest players to have ever played for the New York Rangers,” team president Glen Sather said. “Few players have demonstrated the class, dignity, and gracefulness that Jean possessed throughout his career, both on and off the ice. I had the good fortune to call Jean a teammate with the Rangers, I am proud to still call Jean a friend, and I am honored to announce that he will take his rightful place in the rafters of Madison Square Garden.”

He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1985 and will become the ninth Ranger to have his jersey number retired.

 
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