Chris Kreider does not like to talk about himself. He prefers to let his actions speak for themselves. So when asked his reaction to the praise heaped on him the other day by Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault--where AV referred to the 24 year-old power forward as a player with "elite" abilities--Kreider's low-key response was not shocking at all.
"I take it as a vote of confidence," Kreider said of his coach's remarks. "I've got my own personal goals and the coaches have their goals for me. I know what I want to do on a day to day basis, and that's all I am worried about."
An absolute physical specimen with world-class speed and incredible conditioning levels and strength, the 6-foot-3 230-pound Kreider is coming off a career-high 21 goals and 46 points a year ago. It is clear that Vigneault believes Kreider is capable of more this upcoming season.
"I know what they expect out of me," Kreider told BlueshirtsUnited.com following Monday's morning skate. "I want to show them that I am detail oriented, defensively responsible, and an offensive threat, who is really, really hard to play against and reliable in all situations."
If Kreider has specific personal goals for the 2015-16 campaign, he isn't sharing them publicly, though he does say that any personal goals are line with the ultimate goal of "helping the Rangers win".
He is also aware that if the Rangers are to finally break through and win the Stanley Cup this season then he, as part of the entire group, must raise his level of play in all facets of the game.
"We need everyone to step up, everyone to progress," offered Kreider, who added another seven goals in the playoffs last spring. "We're not an old team. We've got a lot of young guys, so everyone here needs to progress and get better on a day to day basis because this league gets better all the time."
Kreider is expected to play on a line with Derek Stepan and Viktor Stalberg Monday night in the pre-season opener against the Devils.