Kevin Hayes has 5 goals and 4 assists through 21 games this season after putting up 9 goals and 9 assists in his first 21 games last season.
Hayes is averaging 16:35 per game so far this season compared to the 16:17 he averaged in the first 21 games last year.
Alain Vigneault said that Hayes has been adapting to his role going up against top lines.
Vigneault added, "he is coming along, he is progressing and improving and that is what we need from him."
When Hayes is on the ice at 5 on 5 the Rangers have had 48% of the shot attempts and 11 goals for and 8 against. (Natural Stat Trick)
Last season through 21 games, when Hayes was on the ice at 5 on 5 the Rangers had 44% of the shot attempts and 17 goals for and 8 against. (Natural Stat Trick)
Hayes has two goals in the past three games and on the season he is winning 48.3% of faceoffs.
He is averaging 2:15 per game on the PK this season compared to 1:26 last season and only 0:18 seconds on the PP, compared to 1:28 per game last season.
Adam Rotter: Hayes has taken over the role that Derek Stepan had of defending against the other team's top line, like when he went up against Connor McDavid recently. It's a different role than he has had previously but an important defensive role. The Rangers still need him to produce offensively but that probably won't come as easy for Hayes this year as it did last year when on a third line with JT Miller and Michael Grabner they normally had a nice matchup advantage. He's been getting better which is what the Rangers need and hopefully that will continue.