EDMONTON, Alberta — Kevin Lowe, who was an integral part of the 1994 Rangers Stanley Cup team, will have his No. 4 Oilers jersey hoisted into the rafters at Rogers Place in a pregame ceremony Friday night before his two former teams square off.
The morning of his jersey retirement celebration, Lowe’s plaque was unveiled in the Oilers Hall of Fame room next to that of the builder and current alternate governor for the Rangers, Glen Sather, and players Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, Jari Kurri and Glenn Anderson. Messier, who Lowe said played a big part in why he came to New York in 1992, was also in attendance for the event.
“Such a wonderful time,” Lowe said of his four seasons with the Rangers. “I think how fortunate I was — I really didn’t want to leave [Edmonton]. Glen was being a stickler with the contract. It just seemed like the time and the Rangers offered me twice the money that the Oilers were willing to offer me.
“Of course, Mark being there was the real emphasis and it was such a wonderful — you talk about just the whole experience of going to New York City and living in New York City. Our oldest daughter was 2 years old and our son was born there. The challenges of winning the Cup in New York, they had gone 54 years without winning a Cup. So that was a big motivation.
“I quickly realized that Mark was possessed to win a Cup there. We just liked to win, but we really wanted to win for Mark. I remember Mark said, ‘We’ve got to exorcise the demons here, for some reason, there are some demons around and we’re going to have to be up to our absolute best.’ And we did.”
Lowe, who has won the Stanley Cup six times in his career, added that winning the title with the Rangers ranked second amongst all his championships.
After he became the Oilers’ first-ever draft pick, selected 21st-overall in 1979, Lowe went on to play 15 total seasons in Edmonton and four in New York. He won five Stanley Cups with the Oilers and one with the Rangers before switching to the management side of the game in Edmonton. The former defenseman served as head coach, took over as general manager when Sather went to the Rangers and stepped into a President of Hockey Operations role in 2008-09.
The 62-year-old Lowe was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame as part of the class of 2020.
Goalie Alexandar Georgiev made his third start of the season Friday.
The Rangers play the Oilers for the first time since New Year’s Eve 2019, which resulted in a 7-5 Oilers win in Edmonton.