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This Date in NHL History

June 21: Rangers hire Alain Vigneault as coach

Plus: NHL announces 4-on-4 overtime; Marc-Andre Fleury, Eric Staal go at top of first round of 2003 draft

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / NHL.com Managing Editor

THIS DATE IN HISTORY: June 21

2013: Alain Vigneault is named the 35th coach in the history of the New York Rangers.

Vigneault is available after he is fired by the Vancouver Canucks on May 22, two years after guiding them to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final. The Canucks go 313-170-57 under Vigneault and win six division titles in his seven seasons as coach.

The Rangers' job is open after they fire John Tortorella, one week after the Canucks fired Vigneault. In what turns out to be a coast-to-coast exchange of coaches, the Canucks hire Tortorella four days after Vigneault gets the job with the Rangers.

 

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1999: The NHL announces some major changes to regular-season overtime. Under the new rules, each team will get a point in the standings for any game that's tied after 60 minutes; a team that scores during the five-minute overtime period will receive an additional point. Also, overtime periods will be 4-on-4 (plus goaltenders), rather than 5-on-5 (though the change does not apply to the Stanley Cup Playoffs).

 

2000: The Pittsburgh Penguins name Ivan Hlinka as their coach, replacing Herb Brooks. Hlinka, a native of the Czech Republic, becomes the second coach in NHL history who's born and trained in Europe (following Alpo Suhonen). He coaches the Penguins to the Eastern Conference Final in 2001 but is fired four games into the following season.

 

 

2003: The NHL Draft, held at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, produces one of the best first rounds in League history. The top pick belongs to Pittsburgh, which selects goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury. The Carolina Hurricanes, picking second, take center Eric Staal. Among the players taken later in the first round are forwards Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf (Anaheim Ducks), Jeff Carter and Mike Richards (Philadelphia Flyers), Zach Parise (New Jersey Devils) and Ryan Kesler (Vancouver Canucks), as well as defensemen Ryan Suter (Nashville Predators), Dion Phaneuf (Calgary Flames) and Brent Seabrook (Chicago Blackhawks). Each of the 30 players taken in the first round see action in the NHL; 27 play at least 240 regular-season games.

Video: Bill Lindsay redrafts the loaded 2003 NHL Entry Draft

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