Rangers Roundup: Jeff Gorton granted permission to speak with Canadiens, and milestones within reach

Jeff Gorton
Jeff Gorton (Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)

It sure sounds like former New York Rangers GM Jeff Gorton is about to be hired in some capacity by the Montreal Canadiens.

Multiple reports indicate that Marc Bergevin’s run as general manager is done. Also, in the aftermath of the news, Habs assistant GM Scott Mellanby has resigned.

Former Rangers GM Jeff Gorton joining Canadiens

The Habs are 6-15-2 this season and very likely not making the playoffs after a miracle run to the Finals last season.

“They do have permission to talk to Gorton. I’ve been told he’s not going to be the GM, so don’t say he’s going to be GM,” Elliotte Friedman said of the situation. “But it’s possible he could be president of hockey ops or something along that role. Whatever the case is, it appears as if major changes are coming in Montreal and I think Jeff Gorton’s going to be a pretty big part of that.”

Gorton took over as the Rangers full time GM in July of 2015. He ushered in the biggest change in franchise history when they finally did the unthinkable in New York – announced a rebuild.

Aside from key moves like acquiring Mika Zibanejad and Adam Fox for basically songs, he took a barren prospect pipeline and stocked it with some high-end talent. Getting lucky by winning the lottery aside, Gorton is considered one of the best executives in the game today.

Rangers milestones within reach

zibanejad stats
May 5, 2021; New York, New York, USA; Mika Zibanejad #93 of the New York Rangers leaves the ice following the last home game of the season against the Washington Capitals at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Bennett/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers were scheduled to host the Islanders today but the game has been postponed due to an 8th positive case for the Isles. Gerard Gallant’s charges next game will be against the Flyers at MSG on December 1st.

Here’s which Blueshirts are nearing key milestones.

  • Mika Zibanejad is 1 overtime goal away from tying Cecil Dillon, Butch Keeling and Brian Leetch (7 each) for the most overtime goals by a player in Rangers history. He’s also 1 point away from his 300th point as a Blueshirt.
  • Artemi Panarin is 6 points away from 500 career points.

Recent milestones reached:

  • Chris Kreider PPG (67) against the Islanders on 11/24 passed Mike Gartner for the 10th most PPG’s in team history.
  • Ryan Reaves played in his 700th career game on 11/21 against the Sabres and picked up an assist

Notable achievement:

The Rangers hit the 20 game mark against the Bruins on Friday. With the win, it’s their best 20 game start since the 2016-17 season (14-5-1). Gallant also became the second highest point getter for a Blueshirts coach in his first 20 games (Phil Esposito is first with a 15-5-0 for 30 points in 1986-87).

*All Stats and Info courtesy New York Rangers

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