Since his call-up in October, Chris Kreider has done everything right for the New York Rangers except score goals. Well, that’s not entirely true. He did have two goals going into Thursday’s game, but for a player with such a gifted wrist shot, you would expect more goals especially from a team that has serious problems lighting the lamp on a consistent basis.
Well in the third period last night vs. the Dallas Stars in a tie game at one, Kreider gave the Rangers a huge lift by scoring one minute and 18 seconds into the third to give the Rangers a 2-1 lead. The Rangers then tacked on an insurance goal and ended up winning by a 3-2 final score. It was a great win for the Rangers, especially since they were the team being heavily outshot and ended up stealing a road game this time.
You always want to start a road trip with a win to build confidence, but hopefully this particular game can be even more of a confidence-builder, not only for Kreider but for the Rangers. If you are a team that struggles to score goals and you were heavily outshot, but you were able to score clutch goals in limited opportunities against a hot Stars team to come out with a win on the road, you would have to feel more confident overall, especially Kreider.
Kreider had many opportunities to score in his last game against the Boston Bruins, including one on a breakaway and another on a penalty shot that were both saved by Tuukka Rask. Kreider expressed his frustrations after the game as expected, but as a young 22-year-old player, it is critical for his development to not lose confidence in his shot and not become discouraged to shoot the puck. He showed in Dallas that his was not the case.
For Kreider, hopefully this leads to more goals, as this kid has been due to break out for quite some time. He has arguably been the Rangers’ best player since his call up last month. Scoring three goals in a game may not seem like much, but hopefully this is what the Rangers needed to put the last two losses behind them, move on and get back to winning.