Chris Kreider Wins Rod Gilbert “Mr. Ranger” Award

Chris Kreider Wins Rod Gilbert “Mr. Ranger” Award

by April 28, 2022 0 comments

The New York Rangers created an award to honor the late Rod Gilbert. This is the first time since 1988 that the organization has created an award. The creation of the award was a part of plans to honor him throughout the 2021-22 season.  The “Mr. Ranger” Award will be presented annually to the player “who best honors Rod’s legacy by exemplifying leadership qualities both on and off the ice, and making a significant humanitarian contribution to his community.” For the inaugural season, Chris Kreider was announced as the winner.

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Honoring Rod “Mr.Ranger” Gilbert

He debuted with the Rangers in 1960, becoming an effective scorer in his 18-season career. Gilbert ranks first in the franchise in goals and points, playing in 1,065 regular-season games, scoring 406 goals and 615 assists. In addition, he won the Bill Masterson Trophy for perseverance and dedication to hockey. Those qualities were apparent even after his career ended. His number was the first to be retired, and he stayed with the organization as a community representative and became affectionately known as “Mr. Ranger”.

An Honor Deserved

“I’d like to congratulate Chris on being the inaugural winner of the Rod Gilbert “Mr. Ranger” Award,” Rangers President and General Manager Chris Drury said. “Since he made his debut with the Rangers a decade ago, Chris has consistently and willingly devoted his time and efforts to charitable endeavors, especially through the Garden of Dreams Foundation. Chris’ contributions in the community exemplify the kindness and generosity that Rod demonstrated throughout his life. The leadership qualities Chris has shown in the community have translated into him becoming a leader for our team in the locker room through the example he sets daily. Therefore, it is only fitting that Chris is the first annual recipient of this award, which he has rightly earned.”

Kreider Did It

Since the Rangers drafted him in 2009, Kreider has spent his time striving to become a great player; however, he has also spent time off the ice supporting various charities and organizations. The Garden of Dreams Foundation (GDF), Hockey Fights Cancer, Hockey is for Everyone, Season of Giving, and Essential Worker Night is a few organizations he has supported.

On the ice, Kreider has made contributions for the past ten seasons. He has been an alternate captain since 2018 and is the longest-tenured player on the team. This season has been one of his best, with 52 goals, tied for second-most in a single season in team history. In addition, Kreider now holds the franchise records for the most single-season power play goals and game-winning goals.

Last season he was nominated for the King Clancy Memorial Trophy. It is given to the player that best exemplifies leadership qualities on and off the ice for humanitarian contributions to their community. This season he’s the Rangers’ nominee for the Bill Masterton Trophy. Kreider has grown into his role on the team. Despite the fact it has taken ten seasons, he is the new face of Rangers hockey.

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Main Image Credit: Embed from Getty Images

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