It’s hard not to see why the Toronto Maple Leafs were so high on Mitch Marner at the 2015 NHL Draft.
The 18-year-old Maple Leafs prospect had one of the best individual highlights of the entire hockey season for the London Knights against the Niagara IceDogs on Friday night.
In the third period, Marner received a pass just at the top of the right circle. He immediately deked past a defender, kicked the puck to his forehand, and scored on the ensuing move while he was caught towards the back of the goal line.
Words don’t do this play justice.
Marner, well-known for his hands and scoring ability, has registered 30 goals in 40 games for London entering Friday night’s action.
The 2015 fourth-overall pick wasn’t the only highly-regarded youngster that had a highlight-reel play on Friday, as Carolina Hurricanes defenceman Noah Hanifin (who went one pick after Marner in last June’s draft) blazed up the left wing and would have scored an impressive goal on a wraparound had it not been for Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury.
Between Marner, Hanifin, and the play of Edmonton Oilers star Connor McDavid, it has been a solid week for the 2015 draft class.