New York Rangers Led NHL in Total Payroll Once Again in 2009-10

Greg CaggianoSenior Writer IJune 4, 2010

Just a quick little post before the weekend comes. I highly recommend that you all check out the USA Today Salaries Database that covers all four professional sports, and each team and player individually since the 2000-01 season.

For years before the lockout it was always the talk of the hockey world that the Rangers led the league in total payroll and accomplished nothing. People have seemed to forget about that factor once the league switched over to a salary cap.

This is really nothing groundbreaking, but as I was searching through the database today, I saw that the Rangers once again led the NHL in total payroll for the 2009-10 season with $63.880 million. The Ottawa Senators were right behind them, while the New York Islanders were at the bottom of the league with $31.615 million.

The Rangers, in fact, have finished in the top-four in payroll every season since the database was created in 2000.

2000-01: $56.887 (first)

Highest paid player: Brian Leetch ($7.680)

2001-02: $64.793 (second)

Highest paid player: Pavel Bure ($10.000)

2002-03: $76.477 (first)

Highest paid player: Pavel Bure ($10.000)

2003-04: $76.488 (second)

Highest paid player: Bobby Holik ($8.850)

2005-06: $41.474 (fourth)

Highest paid player: Jaromir Jagr ($8.360; Rangers paid $4.000)*

2006-07: $45.050 (third)

Highest paid player: Jaromir Jagr ($8.360; Rangers paid $4.000)*

2007-08: $56.705 (third)

Highest paid player: Scott Gomez ($10.000)*

2008-09: $66.064 (first)

Highest paid player: Wade Redden/Scott Gomez ($8.000)*

2009-10: $63.880 (first)

Highest paid player: Chris Drury ($8.050)*

*Takes place during the cap era. Denotes actual salary and not cap hit. Numbers in millions.

As you can see, the Rangers have been forever throwing money around. Funny how the smaller the payroll, the larger the playoff success. For such a powerful franchise, you would think ownership would have degrees in economics.

Please check out my sports blog, "From New York to San Francisco".