The End of an Era: Glen Sather
It has been made official, at season's end (Saturday), Glen Sather will step down as president of the New York Rangers. When that happens, it will have been 19 years with the front office of the Blueshirts. He began his tenure in 2000 and it was a bumpy one to start but then adapted after the first lockout in 2004-2005.
I am no elite hockey writer, nor have a covered the team long enough to consider myself one, so for me, as a fan, this is sad day in some aspect. Regardless of how many people believe Sather was never good at his job then you are sadly mistaken as a Rangers fan. For most fans I know, he did everything he could to deliver a Stanley Cup to New York.
There is not one person - player or executive that will come into a job and not try to accomplish the ultimate goal. Sather was no different having won 5 Stanley Cups in his career trying to bring one back to Broadway that came ever so close back in 2014. He wasn't here to lose, he was here to win. From the post lockout year of 2005-06 all the way through 2015-16, the Rangers were a playoff team that included a trip to the Stanley Cup finals. Despite some fans calling for head most times, his tenure, although never having won a Cup was a very good one.
He is leaving this organization in great hands and with a team in transition, it might be best for the 75 year old to ride off into the sunset and handing it over to some of the more "younger" presidents in the league. For many younger Rangers fans like myself who was 10 years old in 2000, Sather has been the only guy at the helm for me to fully understand how teams were run. He's all I ever known. This is what life is all about, everyone has a shelf life especially in sports. Managers, players and even those who build the team. Nothing in sports can be sustained for long periods of time under certain circumstances.
For 19 years, I have known Sather to be the guy up until a few years back when he gave over full control to Jeff Gorton, as general manager. Slats gave and did everything he could to bring back a Cup for New York which included giving up year's of first round picks to get players that could be the difference makers deep into the playoffs and it almost worked.
As the Rangers head into a very critical time of the rebuild this offseason, this was the best move for Sather to do. The team is expected to begin its search for a new president almost immediately in hopes to have one in place prior to the NHL entry draft in June.
As for Slats, its finally time to light up the cigar and enjoy life beyond hockey. Thank you from one grateful New York Rangers fan.