June 2005 > Sports > New York Rangers
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Lot 2103: Jean Ratelle Game Used 1970 Ranger Jersey
Many Big Apple hockey mavens' spines will tingle at the sight of this classic "Broadway Blueshirt" worn by "Gentleman" Jean Ratelle in 1970, for several reasons. First, the blue dureen road jersey with "Rangers" running diagonally across the front and a huge "19" across the back and on both sleeves in red and white tackle twill is a perfect exemplar of the "old-style" Ranger motif (complete with the lace tie front) that the team employed from its origination in the 1920s until 1977 when the diagonal letters were replaced by the "shield" logo that fans despised. The next year new coach Fred Shero brought back the traditional style, but it seemed like an updated version rather than an original, as it does to this day (when hockey is actually played, that is). Second, the debonair HOF center was such a longtime favorite at Madison Square Garden as the center of the "GAG Line" with Vic Hadfield and Rod Gilbert. And third because Ratelle is synonymous with the blockbuster multi-player trade with the arch-enemy Bruins early in the '75-76 season that in effect swapped Ratelle for Phil Esposito. The shirt has tagging on inside hem - Size 48 Cosby, the year tag - 1970. It has authentic battle scars, with stick marks and areas of discoloration on the sleeves and red and white waistband and several holes including a half-inch cleave between the "E" and "R" on the chest. A fabulous shirt off the back of one of hockey's class acts.
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