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For many New York Rangers fans, Alexis Lafrenière has not lived up to expectations. As the #1 pick in the 2020 NHL Draft, many expected him to immediately be a force in the league.
But not all #1 picks are created equally. For example, Connor McDavid is barely human. He’s basically a hockey-playing machine. Expecting Lafrenière to be McDavid is unfair.
Plus, McDavid is top-line player. For his entire Rangers career, Lafrenière has generally been relegated to third or fourth line duties. That’s a good problem for the team, which has veterans capable of filling those top-line roles.
But on Sunday afternoon, Alexis Lafrenière reminded fans just how much skill and talent he possesses.
Not all NHL players are capable of this kind of goal. This is magnificent, in fact. Fake shot, between the legs, backhander to the back of the cage. Gorgeous.
It’s not the first time Lafrenière has scored a goal like this, either. He notched a similar tally against the Detroit Red Wings.
“Kid Line” of Alexis Lafrenière, Kappo Kakko and Filip Chytil might be the key for New York Rangers Stanley Cup hopes
There’s no doubt the kid can play, and the Rangers are going to need him. The playoffs are about depth and getting contributions from the entire lineup.
New York acquired Vladimir Tarasenko and Patrick Kane prior to the trade deadline, bolstering an already ridicukously talented unit. But their best scoring line lately has been the aptly named “Kid Line.”
That line consists of Lafrenière, the 2019 #2 overall pick Kappo Kakko and #21 overall pick in the 2017 NHL Draft, Filip Chytil.
And, as I write this story, Kappo Kakko just notched a goal of his own. The “Kid Line” has been dominant lately, and that’s extremely important for the team.
It looks like they’re going to make it 20-0-2 this season.
For the New York Rangers, the NHL playoffs can’t start soon enough.
Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @RealDanZak