ONE HUNDRED TWENTY-NINE PLAYOFF games. Zero Stanley Cups. Who
could blame Steve Larmer if he felt as if he were waiting for Godot?
Only Brad Park, Ray Bourque, Brian Propp and Dale Hunter had played
more NHL playoff games without winning the championship. But in his
130th postseason contest Larmer finally exorcized his demon as the
New York Rangers spiked their own, 53-year-old, Cup curse too.
In another notable streak, Larmer, 33, had played in 884
consecutive regular-season games at the end of last season, third on
the alltime NHL list. Had he not held out in a contract dispute with
the Chicago Blackhawks at the start of the 1993-94 season, he might
have broken Doug Jarvis's seven-year-old record of 964 straight games
in April. Instead he was traded to the Rangers on Nov. 2 and reunited
with former Blackhawk coach and current Ranger boss Mike Keenan.
Larmer, who had more than 30 goals nine times for the Blackhawks,
scored 21 for the Rangers in just 68 games.
Says Keenan, ''Steve's intelligent, competitive, intense and
unselfish.'' And hardheaded. One night in his rookie season, in 1980,
a puck glanced off Larmer's chops and deflected into the net for a
goal. Larmer spit out a half- dozen teeth but never missed a shift.
This is an article from the June 22, 1994 issue