It was a perfect ending of 2016 for the New York Rangers as they thrashed Colorado Avalanche 6-2 on Saturday night at the Pepsi Center where Chris Kreider displayed a rather stunning performance scoring his second career hat-trick. Rangers also outperformed the Coyotes in the Thursday match by 6-3 where Matt Puempel scored a hat-trick to boost the team moral. Henrik Lundqvist returned to the squad as goalie last night after missing two matches due to illness.
The Rangers had a mixed season though the win against Avalanche has ensured them a three match winning streak which will surely work as a huge boost in the New Year. The Coyotes and Avalanche are considered to be two of the weakest teams of the league which can be the reason for the Rangers not to be too overwhelmed by their recent victories. However, all the points count and surely will help Kreider and his team to step up their game.
Kreider is currently leading the team with 15 goals out of the 33 games that he played and was very impressive on the ground. Puempel was equally impressive in the game against Arizona making a statement by completely dominating the opponents.
Kreider in an interview emphasized on the mindset of the players to face opponents as a unit. Mats Zuccarello and Derek Stepan also played their parts with maximum professionalism, each collecting two assists. Although the injuries of Mika Zibanejad, Rick Nash and Pavel Buchnevich put the Rangers under some pressure, J.T. Miller’s three goals from last two matches does add up to bring in some hope for the team.
In an interview, Miller emphasized on the success that his team had during the power play which helped the Rangers to remain one step ahead in the game. With the team scoring a few in the power play, it always puts the other team under pressure and through the process works as an advantage, according to Miller.
Interestingly, Avalanche took the early lead with Cody McLeod scoring the first goal. But the Rangers managed to make a comeback with Kreider scoring twice. Avalanche responded well with Blake Comeau taking advantage of a deflection to make it 2-2. Miller then scored for the Rangers followed by Kreider’s third goal. Miller scored his second to secure the win for his team by 9:34 in the third. Jimmy Vesey scored the final goal for the Rangers to make it 6-2 with less than seven minutes left.