Chris Kreider of Boxford, MA notched his fourth career National Hockey League hat trick on Thursday. Kreider scored three goals in a 6-1 Rangers win over the New Jersey Devils at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.
Kreider registered a natural hat trick by scoring three straight goals. He put the Rangers on the scoreboard at 8:28 of the second period from Ryan Strome of Mississauga, Ontario, and Pavel Buchnevich of Cherepovets, Russia. At the time, the Rangers tied the game at one, after the Devils took a first period 1-0 lead. Kreider then scored the game-winning goal at 13:57 of the second period from Ryan Lindgren of Burnsville, MN, and Strome to put the Rangers up 2-1. Then at the 23-second mark of the third period, Kreider registered the hat trick with a goal from Filip Chytil of Kromeriz, Czech Republic.
Kreider was one of four Rangers players to have a multi-point game. The others were Buchnevich (one goal and one assist for two points), Alexis Lafreniere of Saint-Eustache, Quebec, the Rangers’ first overall pick in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft, (one goal and one assist for two points), and Strome (two assists). The other Rangers’ goal scorer was Brendan Smith of Mimico, Ontario.
Kreider now has 13 goals and two assists for 15 points in 21 games. He is a -6 with 19 penalty minutes, six power play points, three game-winning goals, 44 shots on goal, 13 faceoff wins, 18 blocked shots, 43 hits, 11 takeaways, and 13 giveaways.
At 29.5%, Kreider also has the best shooting percentage in the NHL. Patrik Laine of Tampere, Finland, who has played for the Columbus Blue Jackets and Winnipeg Jets this season, is second on the list with a shooting percentage of 25%. He has scored eight goals on only 32 shots.
This was Kreider’s second hat trick this season. He previously scored thrice in a 4-3 Rangers loss to the Philadelphia Flyers on February 24. Kreider also scored three goals in a 5-2 Rangers win over the Vancouver Canucks on November 30, 2013, and in a 6-2 Rangers win over the Colorado Avalanche on New Year’s Eve of 2016.
The Rangers improve to nine wins, nine regulation losses, and three losses in extra time for 21 points. They are in sixth place in the East Division.