Rangers’ fan favorite Matt Rempe reveals which active player he looked up to growing up; his playing style makes so much sense given his idol

Earlier this season, Peter Laviolette answered with complete honesty when asked if a first-year player ever has brought so much to a team as Matt Rempe has done for the Rangers this year.

Laviolette has been behind the bench in the NHL for 22 seasons but couldn’t recall a breakthrough like the one Rempe has had.

”I can’t think of a player that’s come in and had that kind of impact on a team, on a fan base and on the city,” he said. ”If you watch him, he just smiles. He’s just happy. Loves being here, loves to play the game. He’s been great.”

Matt Rempe played his first-ever NHL game this year but became an immediate fan favorite.

He fought in his first shift ever and continued to drop the gloves with some of the toughest guys in the league throughout spring.

Rempe didn’t contribute all that much offensively, but that was never his role in this team.

Instead, he’s been laying huge hits, getting under his opponents’ skins, and dropping gloves every week.

NEWARK, NJ – FEBRUARY 22: Matt Rempe #73 of the New York Rangers warms up prior to the game against the New Jersey Devils at the Prudential Center on February 22, 2024 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Rich Graessle/NHLI via Getty Images)

Rempe has been a sensation, and the crowd has been screaming Rempe chants at the MSG almost every game since his debut.

But what made Rempe the player he is today?

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MARCH 11: Matt Rempe #73 of the New York Rangers looks on after a hit against Jonas Siegenthaler #71 of the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden on March 11, 2024 in New York City. (Photo by Jared Silber/NHLI via Getty Images)

Earlier this year, he revealed which player he idolized when younger, and his answer made so much sense.

Tom Wilson isn’t the most popular player among the NHL fanbase, but to Rempe, he was one to look up to.

“When I was younger, I think there’s this montage of [Wilson] on YouTube just blowing guys up,” Rempe said. “I used to watch that sometimes when I was younger, it got me fired up.”

COLUMBUS, OHIO – FEBRUARY 25: Matt Rempe #73 of the New York Rangers and Mathieu Olivier #24 of the Columbus Blue Jackets fight during the first period of a game at Nationwide Arena on February 25, 2024 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Ben Jackson/NHLI via Getty Images)

Rempe doesn’t just look at Wilson as a tough guy, but also a great player.

”I like the way he plays. He plays hard, very skilled player as well. It’s a guy who does a lot of different things. Obviously, I got a lot of respect for that guy,” Rempe said. ”I think he’s a hell of a player…. I know he’s a really good competitor.”

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