New York Rangers best Seventh-Round draft picks of all-time

Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers have selected 556 players (through 2023) in the annual NHL Entry Draft, which began in 1963. Forever Blueshirts is going to embark on a series of articles looking at the franchises best picks from rounds 1 through 7.

Join us each week to see who makes the cut.

Note: used to compile this list

Top New York Rangers Draft Picks From Round 7

Henrik Lundqvist
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Although there has never been a set amount of eligible picks every year, the Rangers haven’t found much success in the late rounds, with just 34 of the 142 picks (23%) of their selections past the seventh round ever making it into an NHL game.

Even though we could make a top-five list of players from the eighth round or later, the first entry in this series will start with the best players selected by the Rangers in the seventh round, honoring one of the franchise’s best netminders who recently entered the Hockey Hall of Fame.

Historically, New York has drafted 49 players in this round, with 12 appearing in an NHL game and only seven suiting up for the Blueshirts. Interestingly, the club’s first seventh-round pick was Wayne Bell (94th overall) in the 1970 NHL Amateur Draft, and their most recent one is Hank Kempf (208th overall) in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft, neither ever playing in the league.

1. Henrik Lundqvist – 205th Overall 2000

NHL stats: 887 GP / 459-310-96 / 2.43 GAA / .918 SV%

New York stats: 887 GP / 459-310-96 / 2.43 GAA / .918 SV%

As one of the latest players to enter the Hockey Hall of Fame, Henrik Lundqvist doesn’t need an introduction to any event in the New York City area. Considering “The King” patrolled the goal crease at Madison Square Garden for 15 years, he is arguably one of the greatest skaters ever to put on a Rangers uniform.

Unfortunately, Lundqvist never won a Stanley Cup during his career, losing in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final. But he won 459 games, which ranks sixth all-time in NHL history. Meanwhile, Lundqvist won an Olympic Gold Medal and a World Championship on the international stage, sharing the latter title win with his twin brother Joel.

Besides being one of the greatest netminders of all time, Lundqvist is also one of the best to skate in the SHL, winning two league championships and three Honken Trophies. Additionally, he was named Most Valuable Player in 2005 while earning the league’s Best Player award (Guldpucken).

Overall, Lundqvist leaves behind a legacy with the Rangers that will go unmatched for the foreseeable future. Even though New York has had many Hall of Famers in their net over the years, no one did the job as he did, leaving him in a class all by himself as one of the greatest late-round picks in NHL history.

2. Todd Marchant – 164th Overall 1993

NHL stats: 1,195 GP – 186 G – 312 A – 498 Pts

New York stats: 1 GP – 0 G – 0 A – 0 Pts

Todd Marchant played 17 seasons in the NHL, winning the Stanley Cup with the Anaheim Ducks in 2007. As a seventh-round pick in the 1993 NHL Entry Draft, he played just one game with the Rangers before a trade on Mar. 21, 1994, sent him to Canada and the Edmonton Oilers.

In a one-for-one swap, New York acquired three-time Stanley Cup champion Craig MacTavish from Edmonton. Ultimately, the last helmet-less skater in NHL history would help former teammates Mark Messier, Kevin Lowe, Glenn Anderson, and Adam Graves break a 54-year curse with a championship in June 1994.

Meanwhile, Marchant would help the Oilers win their first playoff series in five years with an epic overtime winner in the opening round of the 1997 playoffs. Overall, the veteran of 1,195 played ten seasons in Edmonton before suiting up for 95 games with the Columbus Blue Jackets, finishing his career with the Ducks in 2011.

3. Mike Mottau – 182nd Overall 1997

NHL stats: 321 GP – 7 G – 51 A – 58 Pts

New York stats: 19 GP – 0G – 0A – 0 Pts

As a Boston College alumni, the Rangers selected Mike Mottau in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft, and the Quincy, Massachusetts native would only skate for 19 games on Broadway before the club dealt him to the Calgary Flames on Jan. 22, 2003. As part of the transition, New York received a sixth-round draft pick in 2003, Ivan Dornic, who never made it to the NHL but played professionally for over two decades in Europe.

Ultimately, Mottau would skate in the NHL for nine seasons, playing games with the New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders, Boston Bruins, Panthers, and Flames. Moreover, he had his best years with the Devils, appearing in 235 contests and tallied 50 points between 2007 and 2010. Interestingly, he never scored a goal with any other club, retiring after 2014 with seven career goals.

Despite not finding a ton of success in the NHL, Mottay was a three-time All-Star in the AHL and was a standout player at Boston College, where he won the Hobey Baker Award in 2000 and captured back-to-back NCAA (Hockey East) championships in 1998 and 1999.

4. Joey Crabb – 226th Overall 2002

NHL stats: 179 GP – 20 G – 33 A – 53 Pts

New York stats: Never played

Joey Crabb remains one of 14 skaters to hail from Alaska and became a part of Rangers history when they selected him in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft. However, like 85% of the team’s seventh-round picks, Crabb never suited up for a game with New York.

Instead, he would make his NHL debut with the Atlanta Thrashers in 2008-09 before signing with the Toronto Maple Leafs for 2010-11. While in Canada, Crabb played in 115 games over two seasons with the team before spending some time with the Washington Capitals and Florida Panthers before departing the league in 2014.

Even though he spent a ton of time in the American Hockey League (AHL), where he won the Calder Cup in 2008, he wrapped up his professional hockey career in Sweden, playing alongside Joel Lundqvist, retiring as SHL champion in 2016.

5. Johan Holmqvist – 175th Overall 1997

NHL stats: 99 GP / 48-34-9 / 2.99 GAA / .890 SV%

New York stats: 4 GP / 0-3-0 / 4.32 GAA / .868 SV%

Johan Holmqvist came to the Rangers in 2000, suiting up for just four games over three seasons as Mike Richter was winding down his career. Interestingly, the team was cycling through backups at this time, employing players like Kirk McLean, Guy Herbert, Jason LaBarbera, Dan Blackburn, and Mike Dunham to share starts.

After several years in Sweden between 2004 and 2006, Holmqvist returned to the NHL and earned a starting role with the Tampa Bay Lightning, suiting up for 93 games over two seasons, compiling a 47-31-9 record. Once Holmqvist left Tampa Bay, he skated for two contests with the Dallas Stars before returning to his native Sweden, where he won two Honken Trophies as Swedish Goal of the Year in 2006 and 2009.

Ultimately, he had more success in the SHL, winning two league championships and being named a starter in the league’s annual All-Star Game. Meanwhile, he won a World Championship in 2006, claiming the tournament’s best goaltender award while representing his home country.

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