Staten Island Teen Receives Wish
Thursday, February 21, 2013
On Wednesday, February 6th the New York Rangers and Garden of Dreams Foundation fulfilled the wish of a 14 year-old Rangers fan from Staten Island. Over the summer, Jonathan’s wish was presented to Garden of Dreams through the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Metro New York. A die-hard Rangers fan, Jonathan’s wish was to meet two of his favorite Rangers, Chris Kreider and Henrik Lundqvist, and with the 2013 regular season underway the Rangers wasted no time in connecting him to his heroes.
Jonathan and his family were hosted by the Rangers for practice on Wednesday February 6th. After being welcomed by Garden of Dreams and Rangers staff, the group was whisked to the Knicks side of the facility for a quick tour before his day with the Rangers would get underway. The family took in practice on the glass watching the Rangers very hard skate following the prior day’s game against New Jersey. After practice, MSG Network’s Sam Rosen and Joe Micheletti, ESPN Radio’s Kenny Albert, and Rangers alumnus Dave Maloney spent some time chatting with Jonathan about the Rangers season and his favorite players Kreider and Lundqvist.
While the team went about their post-practice routine, Jonathan and family headed to the cafeteria for lunch. During lunch, President and General Manager Glen Sather welcomed the family to the Training Center, and then Rick Nash presented each member of the family with a Rangers jersey bearing their names. As the players continue to trickle in for lunch, they all stopped by to visit and chat with Jonathan presenting him with Rangers t-shirts, gift bags, and other treats. The biggest surprises were yet to come as Mark Messier chatted with the family and Lundqvist came by to meet Jonathan and present him with tickets for a suite for the game on February 7th versus the New York Islanders. Jonathan was so excited to go to the game and have a suite to bring friends and family. After seeing a few other players, his other idol Chris Kreider would come in to say hello. As if the experience could not get any better, Coach Tortorella stopped to see the family and invited Jonathan to come to the locker room following the game.
The next day Jonathan, now joined by family and friends, took in the February 7th game versus the Islanders in a catered suite. They received a standing ovation from the Garden crowd when they were introduced during the game. After visits from Rod Gilbert and Brian Leetch, and a 4-1 Rangers victory, Jonathan, Dad, and Grandpa went to the Rangers locker room where Jonathan could catch up with some of his new friends. Decked out in his Kreider jersey and Crown Collection items that he had received the day before, Jonathan congratulated Lundqvist on his victory before touring the locker room and taking a photo in Kreider’s locker. At that time, Kreider came back to the room to see Jonathan and recap the night’s win and Jonathan’s entire experience.
Story provided by the New York Rangers