Canucks pick Jake Virtanen knocks 223-pound defenceman over the boards (VIDEO)

Neate Sager
Calgary Hitmen's Connor Rankin, right, is congratulated on his goal against the Edmonton Oil Kings by Jake Virtanen during first period WHL hockey action in Calgary, Alberta on Friday, Dec.5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Larry MacDougal
Calgary Hitmen's Connor Rankin, right, is congratulated on his goal against the Edmonton Oil Kings by Jake Virtanen during first period WHL hockey action in Calgary, Alberta on Friday, Dec.5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Larry MacDougal

Jared Hauf had a better chance of stopping time than stopping the momentum of Vancouver Canucks top pick Jake Virtanen on Tuesday.

Hauf, a Seattle Thunderbirds defenceman, is listed at 6-foot-5 and 223 pounds. Yet when he crouched to bump  Virtanen in the neutral zone during the Calgary Hitmen-Thunderbirds game, Hauf ended up getting tossed around like a piece of paper in a whirlwind, landing in his teammates' laps after being absolutely laid out by Virtanen.

That's just a prodigious combination of mobile, hostile and agile from Virtanen, who also had a goal and an assist in that game.

The jury will be out for a few years yet on whether the Canucks were right in 2014 to choose Virtanen with the No. 6 overall pick instead of offensive dynamos such as William Nylander and Nikolaj Ehlers, who were taken two and three picks later by the Toronto Maple Leafs and Winnipeg Jets.  

It's plain to see Virtanen has some exceptional strength that he likes bringing to bear against Western Hockey League opponents. The crazy part is it wasn't even the first time the 18-year-old, who won a world junior gold medal with Team Canada last month, has knocked a WHL foe into the bench. And it might not be the last.

Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet.