Rangers’ Chris Kreider says numerous injuries kept him out final playoff push

Chris Kreider skates against Flyers

During end-of-season media availability on Monday, Rangers veteran Chris Kreider revealed that he had to miss the final six games of the season due to an impact-based injury, lower-back issue and muscle spasms, which put a serious damper on his campaign.

“It ripped my heart out,” he told reporters via Zoom.

“Getting injured at the time of year that it occurred was one of the more frustrating things that I’ve ever dealt with in my pro career. You’re in position with six games left where chips might’ve been down, but I think we had some control over our own destiny if we continued winning hockey games.”

Kreider tried to play through it but the injuries didn’t allow him to get back on the ice.

The two games he pointed at was the two-game set against the Islanders where the Blueshirt were buzzing and close to the Boston Bruins for fourth place in the East Division. It didn’t help that Boston was also finding a solid stretch in their own game, but New York was keeping pace right behind them. Facing another playoff bound team in the Isles, this was the series that could’ve changed their fortunes.

But Kreider couldn’t make it on the ice. And the Rangers would end up losing both contests, getting blanked by their New York counterpart in each game.

“It really, really hurt, not being able to play in those two Islanders games.”

But let’s be clear: This season for the Rangers was the furthest thing from a disappointment. In a tough, reconfigured East Division that included true Stanley Cup contenders like the Pittsburgh Penguins, Islanders, Bruins and Washington Capitals, it was always going to be tough just playing this group of teams. The Rangers defied preseason odds and became a team not to overlook on the schedule despite their younger roster.

Now, recognizing what they have in the locker room, Kreider says the sole focus this offseason is getting playoff ready. Because that’s where he sees this New York squad next season.

“I think our attitude starting right now when we leave the rink is we’re making the playoffs next year,” Kreider said. “That’s our goal and everything that we do everything that we work toward over the course of the summer going into the preseason is going to be built toward that one goal.”

In 50 games this season, Kredier tallied 30 points (20 goals, 10 assists) and posted a minus-one in his ninth campaign with the Blueshirts.

Published: 2021-05-10 17:22:12

Tags: #Rangers #Chris #Kreider #numerous #injuries #final #playoff #push

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