Chris Kreider calls line demotion “not a surprise” following 3-2 OT loss | amNewYork

Rangers head coach Gerard Gallant nodded during Sunday when players like Chris Crader and others were moved from their usual lines. 3-2 overtime defeat to Detroit Red Wings.

You can hardly blame the coach though. After taking a 2–0 lead after a period, Rangers looked lifeless and disorganized in the second round, which they eventually paid for.

Chris Kreider was not the only player to be relegated from his usual first-row spot. However, he was the fastest fall player. During the third period, Kreider was seen working on the fourth line and away from his beloved counterpart, Mika Zibnejad.

For the 11th year veteran, his “demotion” was not something he could argue with.

“Things especially aren’t going the way we want them to. Personally, I’m not playing well so it’s no surprise.” Creder told reporters on Monday.

After Sunday’s loss, Gallant was adamant on moving Creder to the fourth row, saying he “deserved to be where he was.”

The former first-round pick for the Blueshirts has recorded four goals and six assists in the season, but his output has not been matched by that career year, when the winger scored a career-best 52 goals.

This year, Creder has faced some bad luck starting the season. He ranks fourth in the entire NHL in scoring with 126 in the season. Even though the lack of scoring may affect some players, experienced players are not seeing it as the main problem of their game.

“It shouldn’t be. I don’t think it is. Individually and as a group, other things matter as much if not more… It’s the details and the details aren’t enough.” Creder added.

Crader may have had the biggest drop in the lines, but he wasn’t the only one who did poorly on Sunday. Gallant and the rest of the team echoed that statement.

“We changed a lot of players. I want everyone to be better, not just Chris Kreider.” “He needs to lose weight instead of going the other way, that’s what we need from our leaders,” Gallant said.

The Rangers’ struggles in the first month of the NHL season are well documented. The combination of poor defence, bad puck luck and inconsistent play from their stars has left the coaching staff looking for a change somehow.

For Chris Kreider, the message has been put forward: While the team itself is struggling, it needs to get better.

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