The Ontario Hockey League regular season started this weekend, and the worst kept secret in junior hockey came to the forefront once again: Connor McDavid is good at hockey.
Like, really good at hockey.
The 17 year-old forward was recently named captain of his Erie Otters team, and opened the season amid much Twitter fanfare and media attention. The young phenom started his season innocuously enough, only scoring one measly assist in his first game, before pumping out three points the next game and then four points last night. His goal with 1:12 remaining in the third period tied Saturday's game, which the Otters eventually won in overtime.
Eight points in his first three games? That's quite a start.
As the OHL season moves along and heads towards the 2015 NHL Entry Draft McDavid might become the most hyped draft-eligible prospect since Sidney Crosby. He's been garnering the attention of hockey media since he was 15, so he probably has ice in his veins now when it comes to handling pressure and living up to expectations.
There's still some debate as to whether or not McDavid will actually go 1st overall in 2015, thanks to competition from American hockey prodigy Jack Eichel, but you can still expect to hear McDavid's name a lot between now and then. It'll be fun watching the NHL's worst teams this season race to the bottom to draft him.
And now, FIRE ZE LINKS!
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Nobody managed to watch or listen to Dallas' 4-2 preseason victory over St. Louis last night, but Mark Stepneski was there, so we'll have to trust his official recap of the events. Apparently Antoine Roussel fought Steve Ott, Jamie Benn shot a puck so hard that it left orbit and hit the International Space Station, and a racist dragon cried a single tear that turned into jellybeans....OK, so only one of those is true, but if Mr. Stepneski would have written the other two then we would have had to have believed him, right? [Stars]
Speaking of McDavid and Eichel, TSN's Bob McKenzie (the 1st overall pick in the "Knows Everything There Possibly Is To Know About Hockey" draft) talks about both players in TSN's pre-season draft rankings. TSN will update their list regularly throughout the season, and they always do a great job with it. [TSN]
To paraphrase every annoying promotional Twitter account ever, "You Won't Believe Which NHL Restricted Free Agent Signed His New Deal!" Well, you might be able to guess, since there aren't too many left at this point. St. Louis Blues forward Jaden Schwartz inked a two-year deal, worth $2 million in the first year and $2.7 million the second year. He's 22 years old and scored 56 points last season. Using those numbers as comparables, how does that affect the negotiations between Cody Eakin and the Stars? [NHL.com]
After winning roughly 19 Stanley Cups over the last 20 years (might need to double-check those numbers), it appears that the Hockey Gods have stuck by their decision to smite the Detroit Red Wings now to even things out a bit. After losing almost all of their big names to injury last season, the Wings are still having trouble staying healthy. Gustav Nyquist left last night's game and could miss some time. Could this be the year where Detroit's playoff streak ends? [Twitter]
One Stars draft choice from 2014 that hasn't gotten a lot of attention is defenceman Alex Peters. Peters, selected by the Stars in the third round, is the captain of his Plymouth Whalers team this season, and says that he's looking forward to playing a leadership role for his younger teammates. A big, shutdown defenceman, he could be another prospect worth keeping a close eye on this season. [Hometown Life]
Someone wrote an article that contains criticism of Dustin Brown being a bad captain, but DIDN'T make any mention of his diving or embellishment?! That's like doing a math equation using the wrong formula but still ending up with the right answer. [The Hockey Writers]
Ville Leino scored a goal last night. No, seriously, that actually happened. Why is everyone laughing? I'm not kidding! [The Hockey News]
And finally...here's an old interview with a then-14 year-old Sidney Crosby, who doesn't really look all that different from 27 year-old Sidney Crosby. Normally I'd say that it's totally crazy to profile such a young player like this...but when you score 159(!) goals in a season like Crosby did then, well, that's kind of hard to ignore. The best part? Crosby's answer: "I knew then that...maybe I had...maybe a special scoring touch, or something." Gee, you think? 159 goals!!!