Ryan Reaves wants to win a Cup with New York Rangers

New York Rangers
Feb 1, 2022; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin (31) celebrates with right wing Ryan Reaves (75) after defeating the Florida Panthers at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Ryan Reaves came close to winning the Stanley Cup with the Vegas Golden Knights in 2018. Unfortunately for the upstart expansion team, Alex Ovechkin and his Washington Capitals had other plans.

The New York Rangers acquired Reaves this past summer for a third round pick. Soon after, they extended the 35 year-old through 2022-23. The extension matches this season’s AAV at $1.75 million.

Ryan Reaves wants a Cup with the Rangers

“Getting traded from Vegas was obviously tough for me,” Reaves said on NHL Network. “Coming here, the guys on this team, obviously [Gallant] and [Drury] they made feel at home right away.”

Reaves, who is listed at 6-foot-2 and 225 pounds has made himself an integral piece of this Rangers team. This season, he has helped the Blueshirts to a 30-13-4 with his hard style of play and acting as a natural deterrent to keep other teams in check.

Despite the easy transition, Reaves still has one goal in mind and one he feels this team can achieve.

“One thing before I got traded, I wanted to come to a team that was going to make a push for a Cup,” he explained. “We’ve got a great group of guys and some really good young talent. You look at some of the leaders on this team [Kreider], [Zibanejad], and [Trouba], they’re playing out of their minds right now. [Shesterkin] is the best goalie in the league.”

“I want to win a Stanley Cup. I want it so bad,” Reaves said. “I’m excited to see what this team can do.”

Reaves loved by teammates

Since the start of camp, Reaves’ personality and energy have drawn players to him. From veterans to kids alike, they love having him in the locker room.

“He’s a good fighter,” a laughing Shesterkin said. “I don’t ever want to be in front of those hot hands.”

In 726 career NHL games for the St. Louis Blues (2010-11 to 2016-17), Pittsburgh Penguins (2017-18), Vegas (2017-18 to 2020-21) and Rangers, Reaves has 51 goals, 59 assists and 963 penalty minutes.

This season, he leads all Rangers with 165 hits. His physical presence out there has created space and instilled confidence in his teammates.

ryan reaves
Jan 19, 2022; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers right wing Ryan Reaves (75) celebrates his goal against the Toronto Maple Leafs with defenseman Ryan Lindgren (55) and defenseman Adam Fox (23) during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

“Having [Reaves] on the bench has everyone puff their chest out a little more,” Adam Fox said. “We feel a little safer. He keeps other team’s guys in check as well. They know they can’t take liberties because they’ll have to answer to him. Having a guy like him allows everyone else to play a little bigger for sure.”

Fox’s sentiments are exactly how the whole team feels about him. It’s also one of the primary reasons why Gallant asked Drury to trade for him in the summer.

When the team played in Vegas in December, Gallant told the media that the focus shouldn’t be on him but on Reaves.

“You know what, the fans treated me A-1 here. I had a great time in my two and a half years,” Gallant said. “I’ll prepare myself for the game and it’ll be nice but it’s really about Ryan Reaves coming back here. Reavo is a fan favorite and he deserves that. So as a coach, it’s nice, but it’s not the same as a player. I’m hoping they have a big cheer for Reavo.”

“How about them Rangers”

Reaves has really enjoyed his time so far on Broadway.

He’s has the admiration of his coach, the respect of his teammates, and love from the Garden Faithful.

As in Vegas, so in New York, Reavo is a fan favorite. He has Rangers fans believing this team can do something special.

“How about them Rangers?” Reaves famously said after a rousing win at home back in November.

Now his tone has changed as the team continues to pile up wins and stay atop the NHL Standings.

“I think we know (that we are contenders),” Reaves said after scoring two goals in a comeback win against the Leafs. “I think some of the league doesn’t believe it. We’re going to keep doing our thing. I mean, the standings don’t lie.”

“For how young we are, we’re mature,” Reaves explained. “We battle through adversity pretty well… It shows that we can hang with the big boys, that we are one of the big boys. We’ve got to keep beating the playoffs teams. We’re proving to the league and to ourselves that we are a contender.”

So “How about them Rangers” indeed.