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Chris Drury named Rangers Director of Player Development

Bobby Bevilacqua

Chris Drury

Photo courtesy of Goldfield/New York Daily News.

On September 4th, New York Rangers GM Jeff Gorton announced that former Rangers captain and 12 year NHL veteran was named the Director of Player Development, where he will help mentor the Rangers’ young prospects in the AHL and throughout the organization.

Throughout his career, Drury has always found success. Starting at Boston University, where he played for four years, winning the Hobey Baker as the best college hockey player in his senior season. The next year, he won the Calder Trophy with the Colorado Avalanche in the 1998-99 season, and then winning the Stanley Cup in Colorado in 2001.

He would wind up playing a total of 12 seasons in the NHL, starting in Colorado, then going to Calgary and Buffalo before finishing his career with the Rangers. In 892 games, he scored 255 goals and 360 assists, adding another 89 points in 135 playoff games, earning him the reputation of being a clutch performer. And last month, he was elected to the United States Hockey Hall of Fame.

But Drury would be quick to say that he had a lot of help and mentors along the way, and now he gets to be that person for the young prospects in the Rangers organization.

“When I first started talking to Jeff about this job I told him that I was so lucky to have my brother and to have good mentors – so many guys along the way who showed you how to act, how to play, how to get things done on and off the ice,” said Drury. “But I told him that not everyone has that. So to be able to work with these kids will be so rewarding.”

Drury’s first official day will be September 10th, where he will attend the prospects training camp before flying out to Michigan to watch the Traverse City tournament. Then he will be with the team throughout the remainder of training camp and the season.

“It’s a position that really excites me, helping prospects and kids it Hartford and all our young players hoping to make it to the NHL,” said Drury. There’s such a fine line if you make it or not because there are so many great players in the game. Sometimes, though, there’s just a little bump you need to get over in order to make it, and in this position it excited me to hopefully help those kids get better and be better for the New York Rangers.”

Jeff Gorton spoke highly of Drury, and seems to firmly believe that he is the right man for the job.

“There’s an obvious attraction to someone like Chris when you look at his pedigree as an NHL player, as someone who has won at every level, that’s been a captain – there’s such a big resume here,” Gorton said. “We think he can add so much to our staff and organization.”

“There’s no question that drafting and developing is the biggest key to any successful franchise in the league today, and it’s becoming more and more important. It’s a smart move for us to spend as much time and effort in development. Adam Graves is extremely good at it, but I feel like adding another person to help with that is important. And Chris isn’t just another person. He’s one who’s had a lot of success and carried himself really well. I’m really excited to have Chris come back to the Rangers.”

With Drury having been a Ranger, a captain, and a leader in New York, it’s a great fit to have him back in that role with the team’s young players. Drury will be an excellent mentor, and will help guide the kids in the AHL through their seasons and their struggles.

“This organization is first class in every aspect,” said Drury. “Everyone who has ever played here knows how well you get treated; and there’s not any door not opened or rock left unturned when it comes to making the team better. I played here and loved it; and obviously I grew up a huge Rangers fan too, thrilled when we won in ’94, growing up in nearby Connecticut. It’s just such an honor to be back in the organization again.”

All quotes were obtained from Blueshirts United.

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Posted on September 6, 2015, in Rangers Updates and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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