Fans of the Toronto Maple Leafs have had the difficult task of attempting to suppress their constant urge to drool since drafting Nick Robertson in the second round of the 2019 NHL Entry Draft last summer.
Playing in his third OHL season, the 18-year-old American product has been a goal-scoring factory for the Peterborough Petes. With a hat trick against the Barrie Colts on Sunday, Robertson became the first player in all of Canadian major junior hockey to score 50 goals this season.
That third tally—which happened to come with his side shorthanded—was a thing of beauty.
— 𝗫 - Peterborough Petes (@PetesOHLhockey) March 1, 2020
After stripping Colts defenceman Nathan Allensen at the point, Robertson used his speed to create a clear-cut breakaway for himself. All alone on Jet Greaves, he ripped a shot from the hash marks that beat the Barrie goaltender blocker side.
His wicked wrist shot on the power play in the first period tied things up at one with less than a minute remaining in the frame. He followed that up with a cheeky backhand shot in the opening minute of the second that found the back of the net.
With those three lamplighters, Robertson became the first Peterborough Pete to score 50 goals in a season since both Jason Dawe (58 goals and 126 points in 59 regular-season games) and Mike Harding (54 goals and 136 points in 66 regular-season games) accomplished the feat during the 1992-93 campaign.
The impressive thing about Robertson’s milestone? It only took him 43 games to do it.
As of Sunday evening, he has the most goals in the Ontario Hockey League. Jack Quinn of the Ottawa 67s sits second with 48, but he’s played 59 games. Robertson’s missed time this season while recovering from a broken finger in November and representing the United States at the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship.
He hasn’t scored in just nine of his 43 games so far this season, has skated in 14 games where he’s found the back of the net at least twice and owns a 14-game scoring streak that stretched from Jan. 9 to Feb. 8.
More Maple Leafs coverage from Yahoo Sports