A heartfelt thank you to Derick Brassard

Rangers' Derick Brassard (16) tries to pass the puck as, from left to right, Philadelphia Flyers' Steve Mason, Sean Couturier, Michael Del Zotto and Braydon Coburn look on during the first period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Brassard (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Derick,

Your combination of all-world skill, love for the game and desire to be a difference maker made the three and a half years you spent in New York fun to watch.

You were a fan favorite in this town– for good reason. For a player to possess both the flash and a high end work ethic that you showed off night in and out was appreciated. I never found myself questioning whether or not you gave it 100%

Thanks for not shying away from the spotlight. Tallying 44 points in 59 post-season games is no small feat. To do that in a market like New York, with the expectations weighing heavy, is nothing short of impressive. You were the backbone for a period of success that has both haunted and spoiled NYR fans.

In February of 2013 you were traded to the Rangers, a talented young player who hadn’t quite put it all together yet.

During John Tortorella’s last playoff run with the organization, your first crack at the post-season, you tallied 12 points in 12 games.

You played a huge role in the run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2014.

I’ll never forget the first time in my life I ever said: “Holy crap, this team is going to play for the Cup.” Dustin Tokarski’s ear is still ringing from this shot

https://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_pKL4dmT-k

 

In May of 2015 the Rangers were down 3-2 in the Eastern Conference Final, an elimination game 6 on the road. You scored a hat trick and added two apples. With the lofty expectations that team carried, five points in a game of that magnitude was the stuff of legends.

https://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kvNXlgt8rzc

 

The culmination of your ascension to a premier offensive talent came in the form of a 27 goal, 31 assist season last year. You were the Rangers’ most consistent offensive threat, and you’ll be missed dearly in that regard.

We’ll also be worse off now that your positive vibes are leaving NYC.

You were a pleasure to deal with for the thousands of fans who bothered you for pictures on the streets of NYC. Thanks for being a pro’s pro.

You always wore your emotions on your sleeve and played to win.

Thanks for the good times and best of luck in Ottawa.