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Chris Kreider Plays Superman, Sends Rangers to East Finals

When it mattered the most leave it up to the man who has been with the New York Rangers to longest to save the team from seeing a Game 7. Chris Kreider answered the prayers of Blue Shirts fans across the Tri-State area when he scored a hat trick in the third period of Game 6 of East Semis against the Carolina Hurricanes. New York trailed Carolina 3-1 with 13:26 to go in the third period, in a series that looked destined for a Game 7 back at Madison Square Garden over the weekend. Instead, Kreider took over. He snuck in the first goal on a short pass in front of the net from Mika Zibanijad to cut the Hurricane lead to 3-2. Later with 8:08 to play, Kreider took an Artemi Panarin shot off his stick, and watched the puck fly through the air and in the back of the net for the tying goal. Finally with under five minutes to play, Kreider took another short pass in front of the net, this time from Ryan Lindgren, and tapped into the goal to put the Rangers in front for the first time all night at 4-3. The hat trick put Chris Kreider in rarified company,  as the third Rangers player to score three goals in a series-clinching game and first since Mike Gartner in 1990. FAN REACTIONS ARE WILD! Of course, the play of their legendary Associate Captain had Rangers fans celebrating all over the place. MSG was packed to the gills with fans who watched on the jumbotron. What a sight it was. Meanwhile, Carolina fans were left to wonder what if? The victory moves the Blue Shirts into the Eastern Conference FInals for the second time in three seasons. They will await the winner of the Florida-Boston series. Florida leads that series 3-2. So the journey for the Rangers first Cup championship since 1994 continues... Party on, Rangers fans! MORE NEW YORK RANGERS

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