Surely no need to panic for Rangers fans but could there be something to read into how Boston College dominated Northeastern (in the Beanpot semi-final last night) while Chris Kreider was pointless and deployed on the third line?
Chris Kreider was deployed on the BC third line with Kevin Hayes, while regular line mate (and fellow BC offensive leader) Bill Arnold lead the Eagles with 1+1 as their top line scored 4 of the team’s 7 goals. This game, and recent weeks, is perhaps why Kreider is still in college – at least from a sporting perspective.
While Kreider has been having a consistent season, likely posting career high numbers across the board, he has somewhat gone off the boil in recent weeks and isn’t dominating any longer – at least on the scoreboard. Kreider came out of the blocks this season exceptionally fast; scoring almost at will, while averaging well over a point per game.
Recently, while Kreider has been contributing, his numbers have come back to earth slightly. The big winger still has an impressive 30 points in 28 games (including 16 goals) but he is no longer the dominant threat he was earlier in the year. It’s known that the BC coaching staff like to use him in a variety of ways and ice time on such a strong club is spread out quite evenly which may be the reason the team has seven players with at least 20 points but it’s hard not to read in to the offensive ‘decline’ – to an extent.
Many Rangers fans clamoured for Kreider to turn pro this year and it seemed there was a chance it could happen as the club tried to openly sign him in the summer. However, with the way the Rangers have progressed this year, with the way Carl Hagelin (who played out his full eligibility in the NCAA) has grabbed a roster spot on the wing, the Rangers have no need for Kreider this season. The right place for Kreider has been college where he can progress in relative discretion.
Hopefully, Kreider and Boston College will continue to have a strong year, will contend and go to the Frozen Four. More on-ice success for Kreider will stand him in good stead should he turn pro in the summer. Kreider appears to have made the right decision to stay in Boston this season. It will be interesting what decision he makes this summer.