Jul 16, 2013, 9:33 PM EDT
In the most literal way, the Colorado Avalanche don’t expect Nathan MacKinnon to lag behind NHL skaters once he makes his debut.
New head coach Patrick Roy gushed about the 17-year-old’s speed.
“People are going to be very surprised by his speed, especially his starts, the 1-2-3, he’s really fast,” Roy said. “He’s one of the fastest guys I’ve seen. He’s has that NHL skating ability, no doubt in my mind.”
Team executive Joe Sakic agrees, saying he’ll be one of the fastest skaters in the league right away. Both Sakic and Roy also believe that he’s ready for an immediate jump.
Roy, in particular, got an idea of the talent displayed by the No.1 overall pick by coaching against him in the QMJHL.
“I know he is ready, I’ve seen him play enough,” Roy said. “But we’ll have to be patient at the start, give him a chance to adapt – I’m not going to compare junior to the NHL – just give him the time to feel good.”
The Avs clearly feel pretty good about him, already.
- Lightning ‘answer the challenge’ in Game 7 to reach Stanley Cup Final 2
- Vigneault: McDonagh was playing with a broken foot 12
- Bolts strike Stanley Cup Final berth thanks to Game 7 win over Rangers 63
- The Ducks got Kesler for a game like Saturday’s 31
- Duchene slams Russian players for storming off after Canada’s 2015 WHC win 54
- DeBoer predicts ‘big bounce-back’ in San Jose 13
- Sabres name Bylsma head coach 46
- Lundqvist on Game 7: ‘You’re definitely nervous, but it comes down to teamwork’ 18
- Report: Bylsma to Sabres being held up by compensation issue 56
- Stanley Cup Final to begin June 3 10
- Kesler on wearing down Chicago: ‘No human can withstand that many hits’ (77)
- From healthy scratch to hero: Vermette scores OT winner for Blackhawks (66)
- Bolts strike Stanley Cup Final berth thanks to Game 7 win over Rangers (65)
- Report: Bylsma to Sabres being held up by compensation issue (56)
- On Kreider, and trying ‘to turn the other cheek’ (54)