Why The Rangers Should Try and Keep Kreider

By Patrick Hoffman

It has certainly been an exciting summer for the New York Rangers.

With the free agent signing of Artemi Panarin and the locking up of defenseman Jacob Trouba, the team's rebuild has sped up in a big way. I'm not sure this club is a contender yet, but it appears that team GM Jeff Gorton and team president John Davidson are looking to do everything they can to speed up the process.

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With that said, these signings have put the Blueshirts in a bit of a cap crunch. They have to shed some players and while fans would probably be fine of buying out guys like Kevin Shattenkirk and Brendan Smith, it might be hard for them to see one of the team's better players get moved.

For this particular piece, I am talking about Chris Kreider. Kreider, 28, has been talked about all summer in trade rumors.

Kreider is due to become an unrestricted free agent after the upcoming season so it's easy to see why the team would consider dealing him in return for the right piece (s). This has me torn.

For starters, Kreider could put the puck in the net. His goal totals since the 2013-14 season have been 21, 21, 28, 16, and 28. That's pretty consistent and in today's NHL, you can never have too much scoring.

I also love his speed. He can blow by opponents easily and has shown that he can create scoring opportunities when he uses his speed to drive hard to the net and go into corners to dig pucks out.

Something else that makes me like him is that he is a true blue Ranger. He has helped this team get to the Stanley Cup Final, Eastern Conference Finals, and into the playoffs in general.

Ranger fans have seen Kreider grow up right in front of their eyes. It'd be a shame to see him leave before he reached his true potential.

On the other hand, I know that many fans may point out the fact that he has not reached his full potential, which they are right on. While he's put up decent offensive numbers, Kreider's also been rather inconsistent as there are games where he has looked all world while in other games, he'd be a non factor.

I know it's going to be tough, but the Blueshirts should do everything they can to keep Kreider. Something tells me that they are going to need his offense and that he might be ready to take his game to the next level.

Unfortunately, us Ranger fans cannot make the decision on Kreider. Let's hope that the franchise makes the right one.

Patrick covers the NHL for The Ultimate Hockey Fan Cave.

He has previously covered the league for WTP Sports, Sportsnet.ca, Kukla’s Korner, Spector’s Hockey, NHL Network Radio blog, TheHockeyNews.com, The Fourth Period, Stan Fischler’s “The Fischler Report”, as well as a slew of others.

For comments and hip checks, feel free to contact Patrick at patrickhoffman3530@gmail.com or on Twitter at @pathoffman35