Welcome to POTVIN SUCKS | A tradition of New York Rangers fans at Madison Square Garden since 1979
Ulf Gosta Nilsson, born in Nynashamm, Sweden on May 11th 1950, came to the NHL in 1978. Signed by the New York Rangers as a free agent along with his right winger, Anders Hedberg.
Prior to that, Nilsson and Hedberg played for the Winnipeg Jets in the now defunct WHA. They played on a line with Chicago Blackhawks legend Bobby Hull who made a 2nd career for himself with the Jets. Nilsson was the team’s all time assist leader (344).
The 1978-79 Rangers showed a lot of promise. Led by great players such as Phil Esposito, Ron Greschner, Don Murdoch, Walt Tkaczuk and goalie John Davidson. The arrival of Nilsson and Hedberg excited the team and fans alike. Through the first 59 games of the season, Nilsson led the team with 27 goals and 66 points. However, Nilsson’s success with the Rangers would be short lived. Fans can only wonder what might have been if number 11 had been on the ice with the Blueshirts in their run to the Stanley Cup Finals that year. Perhaps the Islanders fans' "1940" chant would have ended in 1979. It would be 15 seasons later that another number 11 would finally bring the Rangers a Stanley Cup.
Nilsson only played in about half the games in the 1979-80 season. Same for the 1980-81 season. But he was never the same as before the injury. He tallied only 14 goals in each of those seasons. Another injury during the 1981 Canada Cup caused Nilsson to miss the entire 1981-82 season.
After never fully recovering from this knee injury, he only appeared in a Rangers uniform ten more times. Ulf Nilsson officially retired from the NHL in 1983. He racked up 169 points in his 170 games with the Rangers - nearly a point per game. An incredible player whose career ended too early.
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