Is Alexis Lafrenière a Star in the Making?

May 11, 2024; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; New York Rangers left wing Alexis Lafrenière (13) celebrates after scoring a goal against the Carolina Hurricanes during the third period in game four of the second round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs at PNC Arena. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports
May 11, 2024; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; New York Rangers left wing Alexis Lafrenière (13) celebrates after scoring a goal against the Carolina Hurricanes during the third period in game four of the second round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs at PNC Arena. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports / James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports
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The New York Rangers may have been bounced out of the playoffs after losing in the Eastern Conference Finals, but even in a losing season, there were many positives. 

One of these positives is the emergence of 22-year-old forward Alexis Lafrenière. The former first overall pick in the 2020 NHL Draft saw his production steadily rise over his first three years in the league, but this past season was by far his best and it could be the start of big things to come. 

Stats

Rookie Year 

56 games played, 12 goals, nine assists, and 13:53 time on ice/game. 

Second Year 

79 games played, 19 goals, 12 assists, and 13:59 time on ice/game. 

Third Year 

81 games played, 16 goals, 23 assists, and 15:13 time on ice/game.  

2024 Season

82 games played, 28 goals, 29 assists, and 17:16 time on ice/game. 

Lafrenière took advantage of more ice time by scoring 12 more goals than he did in the previous season. He also benefitted from being on a line with Artemi Panarin and Vincent Trocheck, some of the best playmakers in the league. 

Lafrenière’s Playoff Performance

Lafrenière was great in the regular season, but where he really shined was in the postseason.

The winger scored two goals and had seven assists in 27 playoff games over his first three years. His performance skyrocketed in the 2024 playoffs with eight goals and six assists in 16 games. 

He was a man on a mission to say the least. It seemed like every time he touched the puck he was going to do something creative and had a chance to light the lamp. 

Every 2024 Playoff Goal From Lafrenière 

His eight goals put him tied for first on the team for the playoffs and he was fourth in points. He was the best forward for New York in the ECF when some of the team’s big-name players did not show up. Regular-season production is necessary, but playoff production is more important and it is good to see he can show up when it matters the most. 

The confidence he will have going into next season should be through the roof. He was labeled a bust by many people throughout his first three seasons, but he has silenced the doubters and looks like he could be a big piece down the road for this team.