One of the most popular players in Rangers history is leaving a position in the team's front office.
Mark Messier issued a statement Thursday saying he is resigning his position with the team.
He said he's pursuing an opportunity to expand the game of hockey in the city by developing the Kingsbridge National Ice Center in the Bronx.
Messier was interviewed for the Rangers head coaching job that went to Alain Vigneault.
In his statement, he said, "Although some will perceive this as a reaction to the coaching decision, nothing could be further from the truth. I completely respect the decision that was made and for all the reasons it was made. I harbor no hard feelings toward Glen or the Rangers. This is a personal choice I am making to create a program in the New York area that will give our children more choices and opportunities in the future."
Rangers President Glen Sather also issued a statement, saying, "Mark Messier will always be a part of the New York Rangers family. As a player and then as part of the management team, he brought incomparable passion and dedication to the organization. We wish him well in his future endeavors."