Today, Hockey's Future released their 11-20th ranked prospects for Spring 2013 and the first and likely only Ranger "prospect" finally showed up at the 19th slot. Chris Kreider, up until very recently has not had the rookie season fans and coaches expected out of him. Early season struggles during the lockout with the Whale and post lockout struggles with the Rangers before being demoted on February 28th likely caused Kreider's ranking to slide to 19th from his preseason rank of 11.
Hockey's Future had this to say about Kreider's rookie campaign so far:
With outstanding speed and excellent size, Chris Kreider has the raw materials to be every team's dream power forward. He had three productive seasons at Boston College as well as good international experience, and once he went pro, the Rangers had enough confidence to insert him in their lineup for the 2012 playoffs. Kreider impressed, both with his offensive abilities and his willingness to play a strong defensive game. His 2012-13 campaign has been much less impressive, and he has had some difficulties adjusting to the rigors of the everyday professional game. During this season he has shown signs of being one of the best prospects in the league, particularly during his last demotion to the AHL, but he does not look to be as much of a sure thing as he did last summer.
For the entire article click here.
Kreider's struggles up to this point have been well documented but in the 3 games he's been back, Kreider has turned into completely different guy. His puck tentativeness seems to be gone, more improved play on the boards chasing down pucks and a new found chemistry with JT Miller. Kreider is going to be one of the guys Torts will have to rely on down the stretch especially if the big money guys like Gaborik and Richards continue to struggle.
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