SPORTS

Johnny Gaudreau dazzles for Flames in rookie game

09/13/2014 04:47 EDT | Updated 11/13/2014 05:59 EST
Undersized Calgary Flames prospect Johnny Gaudreau appears ready to make a big impact at his first NHL training camp next week.

The five-foot-nine, 160-pound left-winger added to his collection of highlight-reel goals in Friday’s 6-4 win over the Winnipeg Jets in the Young Stars Classic in Penticton, B.C.

On this night, the 21-year-old Gaudreau grabbed the puck after a line change, dangled his way around the Jets defence and back-handed a shot top-shelf by goaltender Connor Hellebuyck.

Take a look for yourself …

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“Oh, that’s just Johnny Hockey right there,” Josh Jooris, a Union (N.Y.) College product, told reporters on Friday. “Obviously, I saw it a lot in college. That’s just him, he’s just an unbelievable player. When he gets a chance, he’s going to do some damage to you.”

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That makes it two goals in two games in a Flames uniform for Gaudreau, who won the Hobey Baker Award last season as the top player in American college hockey.

Gaudreau, who starred at Boston College last year with 36 goals and 80 points in 40 games, scored in his NHL debut last season in a 5-1 loss in Calgary’s regular-season finale against Vancouver.

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A tantalizing talent, Gaudreau is considered to be in the mix for a role on left wing entering Flames training camp, according to those who cover the team.

While Tampa Bay’s Jonathan Drouin seems to be the favourite among many to win NHL rookie of the year honours in the upcoming season, Gaudreau’s exceptional skills and skating could allow him to flourish and contend for the award.

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