Rangers send Chris Kreider down to AHL Connecticut Whale

Chris Kreider of the Rangers skates against the Chris Kreider of the Rangers skates against the Tampa Bay Lightning. (Feb. 10, 2013) Photo Credit: Jim McIsaac

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Chris Kreider's next game likely will be Friday against Rick DiPietro and the AHL Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

The 21-year-old left wing, who had a goal and an assist in 11 games, was sent to the Connecticut Whale, which faces Bridgeport in a home-and-home Friday and Sunday.

"Chris has a lot to learn about the game and a lot to learn about how to be a pro," said coach John Tortorella, adding that Kreider "has a tremendous amount of attributes to be a very good player. He has to put them all together. Playing four minutes on a fourth line or six or seven minutes on another line is not going to help."

Kreider played only 4:23 against Winnipeg on Tuesday and averaged about 10 minutes in his other starts.

Another heralded rookie, J.T. Miller, 19, remains on the club and played his 11th game Thursday night.

Kreider, who burst on the pro scene with five playoff goals last spring right out of Boston College, has said he's aware that he needs to improve defensively and to be on the puck more.

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During the lockout, Kreider played 34 games with Hartford and was 5-7-12 with a minus-7. He stayed with the club after the six-day training camp and later missed four games (from Jan. 26 to Feb. 2) with a bone chip in his ankle.

Blue notes

The 17-shot difference in the 20-3 first period was the Rangers' most since they recorded a 20-3 edge in the second period Jan. 9, 2010, against Boston . . . Brad Richards won 17 of 20 faceoffs and had an assist . . . Stu Bickel played forward on the fourth line for the sixth game; he also has played on defense six times . . . Arron Asham (back spasms) missed his fourth straight . . . Matt Gilroy (flu) was scratched after playing in 12 straight.

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