In the Dobber Hockey Prospect Guide, they look at the upside for each of the Rangers prospects.
For Chris Kreider that say his upside is comparable to that of Montreal’s Max Pacioretty and that he can be a 35 goal/40 assist guy.
Dobber defines “upside” as statistical number that the players will likely not surpass but a realistic number that the player can hit.
At Hockey Prospectus, Corey Pronman says that Kreider could be a “below-average” top-line winger in the NHL but adds that Kreider’s projection carries “notable” uncertainty.
Pronman says that Kreider’s physical tools are “simply tremendous” and that his skating ability and speed make him a dangerous player in transition.
Pronman ranked Kreider as the 41st best prospect in hockey.
In his first professional season, Chris Kreider played a total of 79 games.
He played 48 in the AHL, 23 in the NHL and 8 in the NHL playoffs. Combined, Kreider had 15 goals and 15 assists this season.
Kreider was sent down to Hartford earlier in the season because John Tortorella said that he wanted him to work on all aspects of his game, “it’s his whole game. It’s not a criticism. It’s part of learning the game. He has speed, has size, a lot of attributes. It’s a matter of getting him to make a difference within the game.”
Tortorella said many times that due to the shortened season he wasn’t going to able to afford players the same level of patience that would under a normal season.
In regards to Kreider’s development, Ryan Callahan told the Rangers website, “he’s young still, everybody put a lot of expectations on him, coming off the playoffs he had, he’s still young, he’s still learning, but you can see how good he’s going to be, he’s got a lot of size, his speed, his shot, you just have to be patient with a young guy and realize that he is still learning the game and the speed of it. He’s gonna be good”
Callahan has said that he can relate to the situation that Kreider is in.
Before he was traded, Mike Rupp told the Daily News, “He’s got all the tools. Sometimes it just takes a little bit of learning, and he was in a position last year, too, where he was just kind of thrown into it and you’ve got to find your way. But he took it really well and took it in stride, and he’s one that he’ll come and work at it.”
Dave Maloney told the NY Post that it’s never a bad thing for a player to start his pro career and adjust to being a professional player in the minor leagues.
For the second straight year, Cam Atkinson of the Columbus Blue Jackets put on an event to benefit the Marty Lyons Foundation.
According to the Greenwich Times, Derick Brassard and Chris Kreider were in attendance as was Dave Maloney who was the MC of the evening.
Kreider, who was a teammate of Atkinson’s at BC, was at the event last year as well.
He said of helping out, “it’s like a fraternity, everyone supports each other and can put aside their differences for a good cause.”
Kreider has been known to be a frequent participant when it comes to charity events.
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According to Ryan Kennedy of The Hockey News, Chris Kreider is still considered a rookie and eligible for the Calder trophy because of last season’s lockout.
Kreider played in 23 games last season and was considered to be a favorite for the award heading into last year.
Kreider said this week that he is just focusing on trying to make the team in training camp.
From the NHL “To be eligible for the award, a player cannot have played more than 25 games in any single preceding season nor in six or more games in each of any two preceding seasons in any major professional league.”
Yesterday, Chris Kreider made an appearance at the Rangers youth hockey camp and took some time to chat with the Rangers website.
He said that his goal for this coming season is to just make the team and that he wants to improve everyday.
Kreider wasn’t asked about John Tortorella or his relationship with his former coach but said that he is looking forward, like all players, to the new opportunity that Alain Vigneault and the new coaching staff will bring.
He added that some of the things he is working on this summer is his play in front of the net and improving on taking one-timers.
It has been said that Kreider stands to be one of the players who benefits the most from a coaching change.
Kreider is an RFA after the season.
In the NY Post, Larry Brooks writes that one Ranger who should stand to benefit from Alain Vigneault’s approach is Chris Kreider.
Brooks says that Kreider and the other wingers should have more time and space in the neutral and that plays much more to Kreider’s strengths than the battling for the puck along the boards or below the goal line.
Kreider, “a great skater with a big-time shot,” is a player who is at his best when he can get the puck in open space and use his speed to create chances.
Andrew Gross writes in The Record that Kreider will benefit from a new found confidence.
THIS SECTION is all about Kreider.
Adam Rotter: A lot of Kreider’s struggles so far get blamed on John Tortorella, but it wasn’t Tortorella who caused Kreider to struggle with the Whale in the first half of last season. He was a raw player when he went to BC, played two years and then broke out as a junior. He know has one-full season as a pro hockey player to go with the 18 playoff games he played in 2012. The world was expected of Kreider when he came to the Rangers, and to some people it still is, but he is about to go through his first full NHL training camp in September. A good year from Kreider won’t be another reason to knock John Tortorella, more than likely a good year from Kreider will just be the next step in his development curve.
At The Record, Andrew Gross writes that when the Rangers look to make improvements during the offseason, they should continue their stance of refusing to include Chris Kreider in any trade talk.
Gross says, “he can be a special NHL player. It would be a shame to see him become one elsewhere.”
Kreider is an RFA after next season. He turned 22 years old at the end of April
During the playoffs, John Tortorella said of Kreider, “Chris is still in the middle of the process. He has major assets and he is going through the process. This is a really good thing for him, to get an opportunity to play some games.”
Kreider told the NY Times on break up day that he felt this season was very encouraging and loved the feeling of getting better everyday.
THIS SECTION is all about Kreider.
Adam Rotter: As far as I have heard, the Rangers still hold Kreider in extremely high regard and view him as an important piece for the future. Ryan Callahan had struggles, Michael Del Zotto had struggles and Kreider struggled, but made big strides, during his first pro season. So much was expected of Kreider but he didn’t get to have the same kind of regular season that a rookie should. With the schedule compressed and the Rangers needing to find ways to get points, John Tortorella didn’t feel comfortable putting Kreider on the ice. When he played in Hartford he scored and each time he came back he looked better.
He has a full season under his belt along with a full season of playing and learning how the Rangers want to play. During the playoffs in 2012 he played on instinct with very little coaching. That led to some really good moments and some really bad moments. Kreider ended the playoffs this year in a top six role and looked like a player who wants to hang onto that role for next season.
In the playoffs, Chris Kreider has played in 7 games and is averaging 8:40 per night.
His lowest ice time in the playoffs was 4:05 in the Washington series and his highest was 13:50 in game four.
He has one goal and one assist with 16 hits and seven shots.
Kreider told the Daily News earlier in the playoffs that he tries not to think about what it means to be placed on which line and that he is just happy to have an opportunity to try and help the team win.
He added that he is much more focused on the result of the game than his own performance and doesn’t want to create a problem by over-analyzing himself.
Kreider told ESPN NY that no matter what people think or say about his season, he feels that he learned a lot, had a very positive experience and told SI.com, that he isn’t and has never doubted himself.
Larry Brooks writes in the NY Post that so far, Kreider has shown to be a clutch playoff performer.
John Tortorella said the day before game five that he wanted to give Kreider another chance to play on a higher line after he thought that Kreider played well in that spot before he got hurt in game three.
“It is so surreal. It’s not something that can really be explained. It is something that just has to be felt, but it was awesome. I’m just excited to give these guys an opportunity to play another game.”