Watch: Yakupov nails pregame trick shot

Edmonton Oilers' Nail Yakupov celebrates his game-tying goal at centre ice. (Jason Franson/CP)

While the teenager’s in-game play has been solid — eight points in his last eight games — rookie Nail Yakupov’s most memorable clips from 2012-13 might involve his playful actions both before and after the whistle.

The Russian phenom was caught messing around prior to Wednesday’s game, a loss to the Phoenix Coyotes.

As Sportsnet’s Gene Principe was preparing to deliver a rink-side television report, Yakupov worked on his long-range backhand passes by aiming at a water bottle standing way down in the far corner of the freshly Zamboni’d ice.

Watch above as Yakupov, wearing sneakers and standing mid-ice inside the bench, flips a backhander all the way down the ice — knocking down his tiny target.

This time the 19-year-old was content to celebrate his achievement with a relatively subdued fist-pump and some high five.

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