Here's some weekend viewing for NHL fans in Florida, Colorado and Calgary of Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin being really, really good at hockey.
The fancy stuff might have packed away during the playoffs in many puck precincts, but not at the Halifax Metro Centre, where there was a classic episode of The Nate and Jo Show on Saturday. The Mooseheads' draft-year duo, who were relatively quiet during the second round of the playoffs, kicked it up a notch on Saturday in the opener of the QMJHL semifinal. In front of a sellout crowd of 10,595 plus Florida Panthers general manager Dale Tallon, whose team will be in the NHL draft lottery, MacKinnon (3G-1A, +3) and Drouin (2G-3A, +4) combined for nine points during Halifax's 6-4 victory.
MacKinnon's hat trick included an end-to-end play that he started in front of his own net and finished with a burst of speed to redirect a pass. His second goal came via Drouin's creativity, as the left wing sucked in a checker and made the dainty flip pass to a speeding MacKinnon, who warded off Chicago Blackhawks second-round pick Dillon Fournier before besting goalie Alex Belanger.
The Mooseheads' megatalents don't always pull of the high degree of difficulty of plays, but is sure is nice when they do.
Drouin's five-point night including scoring on a penalty shot and also getting the game-winning goal in the third period (not shown). You have to like the certitude he showed while doing the 'skate in all cazh, then deke the goalie' manoeuvre.
Fellow top prospect Seth Jones had a very good night for the Portland Winterhawks, too. The mobile defenceman jumped into a rush to score the game's first goal and helping his team pitch a shutout during a 4-0 win over the Kamloops Blazers in the WHL Western Conference.
Count yourself lucky if you get to see any of the three on a regular basis. Count yourself luckier that you're not a NHL GM who's going to be judged by trying to guesstimate which of the three will have the best career.
Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet. Please address any questions, comments or concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org (videos: Halifax Mooseheads, John Moore).
- Sports & Recreation
- Ice Hockey
- Jonathan Drouin
- Nathan MacKinnon
- Halifax Mooseheads