According to TSN’s Bob McKenzie, the New York Rangers have signed Boston College standout Chris Kreider to an entry-level contract.
Kreider, 20, was New York’s first-round selection at the 2009 draft and recently won a national championship with the Eagles at the Frozen Four in Tampa. Rangers assistant GM Jeff Gorton was actually in Tampa to begin negotiations with Kreider as soon as the tournament finished, a fairly good indicator of how keen the organization was to get the 6-foot-3, 220-pound forward into the NHL.
Another indicator? The Rangers inked Kreider to a three-year deal, but essentially “burned” one of those years by having him join the team now. Since he’s on the active roster and eligible for postseason play, the Rangers are taking a calculated risk — losing an entire regular season of his services in order for him to aid in the current Stanley Cup chase.
If you’re curious as to how New York’s players will receive Kreider, consider what center Brian Boyle told the New York Post on Tuesday.
“If he comes, we’ll welcome him with open arms,” he said. “He skated with us [in informal workouts] before camp opened, he’s a good kid, and if he can come in here and wants to help us, why not?
McKenzie reports that Kreider will join the Rangers tomorrow for practice. The Blueshirts open their playoff campaign against Ottawa on Thursday.