Look, we’re all friends out here. Sure, the Rangers have been kinda mean to our favorite team and appear dead set on getting fighty with them again, but in the end, we all love hockey and are here to bring each other up. …Right?
That’s why, when the Rangers announced on Friday that they were retiring Henrik Lundqvist’s number 30 next season, I took to the RMNB Twitter to make a suggestion to our rivals to the north.
free tip, you guys should update your statement template because every time we see this one, we start giggling about Tom Wilson's "horrifying acts of violence"
— RMNB (@russianmachine) August 20, 2021
The RMNB tweet got over 225 interactions, including a reply from user Stinkface McPooplightning. “As a Rangers fan, I can honestly say you’re 100% right.” Thanks, Stinkface.
My tweet, for those who don’t recall, was referencing a May 4 statement the Rangers made after the NHL announced that Tom Wilson would be fined, not suspended, for his role in a line brawl. The Rangers called Wilson’s antics a “horrifying act of violence”, which was a bit of a stretch, and “dangerous and reckless.” The team also said George Parros was “unfit” to continue in his role as director of the Department of Player Safety, which apparently was a step too far for the league.
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) May 4, 2021
The NHL fined the Rangers $250,000 for the statement. According to ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski, the comment was commissioned directly by Rangers owner James Dolan.
Once the season ended, the Rangers cleaned house, firing nearly everyone with leadership roles on the team from GM to coach.
“That’s PR,” former Rangers GM Jeff Gorton said of the statement on the Cam & Strick Podcast. “Yeah, that’s PR with the owner.”
When asked if his first reaction was What the hell is this?? Gorton agreed.
“I think that’s fair to say,” Gorton said. “You might have seen it the first time I did.”
The statement was, in my opinion, as ridiculous as it was embarrassing. It’s something, from the design of the template to every over-the-top adjective, that you could never forget. That’s why I thought putting Henrik Lundqvist’s jersey retirement announcement on the same design template sullied Hank and anyone else associated with it in the future. Look, I have a 20-year background in promotion and design. These things bother me.
Welp, two days later, the Rangers apparently agreed because they released a new design of their statement template, reacting to the passing of Rod Gilbert.
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) August 23, 2021
No more center-aligned, all-uppercase words in the body. Just left-aligned, all-italic words. It’s softer, more refined. The Rangers logo was added to the right-hand corner and is circled in pencil. The grey background was changed for a different grey texture.
Sure, maybe it was a coincidence or maybe we inspired real change. Whatever it is, let’s just all hope the Rangers learned from their mistake last season.
S/T to @loyalcaps for first noticing.
Headline photo: @NYRangers
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