Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Should Kreider Sign or Spend Another Year At BC?

Over the past few months much has been written about Rangers 2009 first round pick Chris Kreider and whether he will or won’t leave Boston College this summer to sign with the New York Rangers.  Everything that has been said to this point suggested the Rangers will attempt to bring him into the fold even if to play for the Connecticut Whale in the AHL next season.  The hesitation appears to have been more on the side of Kreider himself.  According to John Connelly at the Boston Herald that might be changing as Kreider is considering leaving Boston College for the Rangers. 

In the past few days both Cam Atkinson and Jimmy Hayes left BC early to sign with their respective NHL clubs.  Those moves might make it easier for Kreider to do the same based on the level of talent that will be left in the program next season.  The question remains though if Kreider is really ready to make the transition from college to the pros.

There are those who say he might be bored with the college game and that is a possibility, but if it is so easy for him you would think he would put up better numbers than 11 goals and 12 assists in 37 games.  Those stats do not speak to domination or even Kreider coming close to tapping the potential he has at this point.  For those who throw out the Derek Stepan comparison you have to realize the utter differential in the way the two performed in college and have reasonable expectations both for Kreider’s performance next season and whether he should leave at all.  In 41 games last season Stepan had 12 goals and 42 assists for an average of 1.32 points per game while Kreider was at .62 this season.

Personally I would rather see him stay at BC for another season and work on his game in a great program where he is likely to be the main focus of the offense next year instead of forcing him into the professional ranks early and looking to “fix” the issues with his game.  College hockey is certainly a place where he can develop.  The biggest negative being that he will not be preparing for the grind of the long professional season with the shorter schedule, but if it improves his game and ability to be an impact player down the road it is still the right move.