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Extra resources for Connor McDavid: Hockey’s Next Great One
38 HOCKEY’S NEXT GREAT ONE 39 CONNOR McDAVID cut the deficit to one, it was his sublime work on Pouliot’s game-tying marker that left fans shaking their collective heads in disbelief. K. Subban along the sideboards for a loose puck and promptly chip it past an oncoming Andrei Markov, all in one motion, to spring his linemate for a clear-cut breakaway. It was poetry in motion and something not seen in this neck of the woods since the days of No. 99. Despite being the one who ultimately ended up paying for the kid’s handiwork, the Canadiens’ star netminder had nothing but praise and admiration for the young phenom.
It certainly was, and the Oilers definitely did, after dropping three straight to close out a rather disappointing four-game trek out east. To their credit, Toronto was far from terrible on the night but was simply incapable of containing Edmonton’s top line. “You just watch the stuff he can do, the little things most players don’t see,” Leafs defenceman Jake Gardiner said. “He was in on all five goals tonight. He is definitely a guy you’ll have to be aware of. He’s right up McDavid scores one of his two goals against Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Jonathan Bernier.
Obviously, it was not the greatest of starts, but a handful of games do not make a season. While keeping the kid off the scoresheet during his time in the OHL was a near impossible task, things aren’t quite so easy at this level. No matter how good the player, today’s NHL coach can find a way to quiet anyone for short periods of time. So it was always a matter of time before McDavid turned in a so-called breakout performance and Edmonton won its first game of the year. Enter a date Connor McDavid during his breakout performance in Calgary on October 17, 2015, in which he scored two goals and an assist to lead the Oilers past the Flames 5–2.