New York Rangers Chris Kreider was medically cleared by the team doctors on Wednesday and could be back in the lineup on Friday night.
For New York Rangers forward Chris Kreider, the road to get back on the ice has been long and sometimes scary. Kreider left the ice in the first period of the Rangers 1-0 shootout win over the Montreal Canadiens at MSG on Dec. 27 and hasn’t appeared in a game since.
He’s now officially back as head coach Alain Vigneault provided the news everybody wanted to hear, via Tom Gulitti of NHL.com.
“He’s been cleared with the docs, he skated with us again [Wednesday]. That’s not a lot of full practice time,… I would say [Kreider] is getting close and that’s going to be positive. That’s going to bring us positive energy.”
Kreider was diagnosed with a blood clot in his right arm initially as it’s been a tough road for the power forward.
After meeting with doctors, it was decided that surgery would be needed to correct the problem and on Jan. 7 he had successful rib resection surgery to treat the blood clot. He has been slowly trying to get back into game shape and returned to practice on Feb. 14 for the first time since the surgery and has not suffered any setbacks.
The Rangers are 7-15-1 in the 23 games that Kreider has missed and are six points outside of a wild card position with an overall record of 27-28-5.
Now cleared, Kreider will not make the road trip to Montreal as the Rangers will play the Canadians on Thursday night at the Bell Centre, 7:30 p.m. EST. His return could come in the next game, on Friday at home against the Minnesota Wild.
“I don’t like watching,” Kreider said last week. “The game is pretty easy when you’re watching on television or watching from up in the [press box].” He is anticipating playing either Friday night against Minnesota or Sunday night against Detroit. Both contests will be at Madison Square Garden.
Chris Kreider’s return could help jump-start the struggling Rangers team who are in the midst of a four-game losing streak. Kreider has appeared in 37 games this season scoring 11 goals with 11 assist for 22 points.