The New York Rangers have a long-standing history of being one of the “Original Six” teams forming the early NHL. In the time since the inaugural 126-27 season, there have been many players who’ve worn the Broadway Blueshirt sweater but on 27 players honored to have worn the captain’s “C” on the front of their sweater.
Jacob Trouba is now a part of the Rangers team legacy.
The Rangers have honored defenseman Jacob Trouba and he becomes only the 28th player to wear the “C” this season. Chosen by GM Chris Drury (one of the 27 previous Rangers captains as well) for his tenacity and leadership: “Since he joined the Rangers, Jacob has consistently displayed all of the qualities we want in a leader on and off the ice. As we look to take the next step as an organizaton, he is a role model for all of our players to follow and the perfect choice to be our captain>”
Jacob Trouba is the first Rangers captain since Ryan McDonough who held the “C” twice from 2014-15 and 2017-18 and is the 12 defenseman to be the Rangers captain. The 6’3″ defenseman hails from Rocherster, MI and is the fourth straight American born player to be honored by the Rangers as its captain as well. Trouba had earned the Rangers “A” before the start of the 2020-21 seasn and he’s played in 597 NHL games with the Rangers and the Winnipeg Jets going back to the 2013-14 season. As a point scorer, Trouba has put in 62 goals and 195 assists during his NHL career, including a career high 11 goals and 28 assists last season in 81 games. In addition, Trouba has shown great defensive skills and had 177 blocked shots last year which was the second highest amongst defensemen in the NHL.
Legends have worn the Rangers “C” in the past.
In reflecting on the history of the Rangers organization, Jacob Trouba joins an elite fraternity of players who have been selected for the distinct honor of being a Rangers captain during the regular season. Some of the great Rangers captains includ the original Rangers captain Bill Cook who wore the “C” during the Rangers initial season in 1926-27. Cook established many firsts as a Ranger including scoring the team’s very first goal, the first captain of a Stanley Cup team and the first Ranger who spent the majority of his career with the Blueshirts to entered the NHL Hall of Fame.
Another great Rangers captain was none other than Harry Howell who at the tender age of 22 was honored to wear the “C” and still holds the record for most games played in Rangers history. Howell was joined by Andy Bathgate who played for the Rangers for nine seasons before becoming the team’s captain and eventually set just about every team record for goals, assists and total points scored.
The 1970’s decade saw the Rangers lean on both Brad Park and Phil Esposito to wear the “C” during their tenure with the Blueshirts. Park has a perennial All-Star during his tenure with the Rangers and ironically was involved in one of the biggest trades in Rangers history when he was sent to the Boston Bruins in exchange for his eventual replacement by the name of Phil Esposito. While it took time for Esposito to be accepted by Rangers fans and vice versa, he became one of the most well respected Rangers of this decade.
In discussing the various Rangers captains in the franchise’s history, no discussion is worthwhile that doesn’t recognize Mark Messier as one of the great captains to ever wear the Rangers “C.” Messier came over in 1991 from the perennial Stanley Cup winning Edmonton OIlers and eventually led the Blueshirts to winning the Stanley Cup outright in 1994 – the first player to win Stanley Cups with different teams. After Messier left, Brian Leetch became the first American-born Rangers captain and when Messier returned to the Rangers, Leetch returned the “C” back to Messier. Adding to the Hall of Fame aura of being a Rangers captain, Jaromir Jagr also was honored as captain during the 2006-2007 season and held the “C” for two seasons while in New York.
Jacob Trouba was selected recently to be the Rangers captain by none other than GM Chris Drury who himself wore the “C” for three seasons. By passing on the “C” to Trouba, Drury imparted the history, accomplishments and legacy of each player who wore this distinction before and sets the high standards for being a captain with this proud and storied NHL franchise.