There was a ton of uncertainty surrounding Chris Kreider as he entered the final season of his contract, but that didn’t stand in his way from a production standpoint. Just prior to the trade deadline, the New York Rangers rewarded the 29-year old for his continuous strong play and signed the dotted line on a seven-year, $45.5 million contract extension.
Chris Kreider certainly had several standout moments during the 2019-2020 regular season, but I don’t think anything tops his game-winning goal against the New York Islanders on January 16, 2020. Both teams traded goals throughout the game, including a heartbreaking tying goal by the Islanders with seven minutes remaining. However, an ill-advised penalty by Derick Brassard gave the Rangers a shot at redemption, and Chris Kreider was on the doorstep to deliver.
The wonderful head fakes by Artemiy Panarin allowed the Rangers a clean zone entry on the ensuing power play, and it took only a matter of seconds before the puck was in the back of the net. A quick shot by Mika Zibanejad generated a massive rebound in front of Semyon Varlamov, and Chris Kreider was in the right place at the right time to bang home the rebound.
Kreider’s tally sent Nassau Coliseum into a frenzy as visiting Ranger fans erupted as the puck crossed the goal line. The Rangers were able to defend their 3-2 lead with only seconds remaining on the clock, and picked up their second consecutive win over the Islanders in a matter of days.