Mason McTavish would instead be in the NHL appropriate now — properly, an NHL truth that in fact incorporates enjoying games.
The Anaheim Ducks, at the moment tied with Vegas Golden Knights for the Pacific Division lead, have been a pleasant surprise. So was McTavish, who performed nine online games to open the period just before eventually landing again in the OHL. He had a hat-trick in his to start with game again with Peterborough, placing the rest of the league on discover.
McTavish deserved to start out the period in the significant leagues, but more growth serves him properly. And that’s why he’ll invest the holiday year serving to Canada chase gold alternatively of sitting on a Southern California beach with the rest of his teammates.
Alternatively, he’ll be in chilly downtown Edmonton, a metropolis infamous for acquiring pretty severe winters. But the allure of a Earth Junior Championship gold is far too much, and Canada will want McTavish to not only be just one of Canada’s most effective players but a person of the finest in the tournament, time period.
“It sucked getting to appear back again, but currently being here is of course a dream occur correct, so it is variety of a win-gain problem for me,” McTavish explained on Saturday. “It’s always been a aspiration of mine to play in the planet junior tournament. Since I was a young child, I would flip it on immediately after Xmas and generally view Group Canada play, so it is really special that I get the possibility to participate in in it now.”
McTavish had some strong times in his small NHL stint, such as a target and an support in his NHL debut towards Winnipeg. That experience playing towards men ought to go a prolonged way. Jake Neighbours and Cole Perfetti have also seen NHL time this yr, with Neighbours recording two details in a 9-recreation run with the St. Louis Blues.
That variety of professional knowledge is important for anyone like McTavish, who lots of didn’t be expecting to get a flavor of the NHL so rapidly following playing a partial 12 months in Switzerland.
“I learned a good deal from Ryan Getzlaf and the way he plays and he carries himself,” McTavish stated. “I’m having a great deal of that and hoping to employ it into my day to day life.”
Participating in versus males and residing the pro life-style is a thing Canada’s coaching staff members won’t take for granted. It brings a presence to the group that cannot be replicated in junior hockey, and it is one thing that assists a player play at a bigger stage when acquiring despatched again down. In McTavish’s situation, he needed enjoying time, and the team was thriving with the group they had. There just were not many alternatives to give McTavish the ice time he needed.
But he gained a person useful trait that goes a long way in a youthful player.
“I’m certainly a great deal extra self-confident taking part in 9 game titles in the NHL and then coming and taking part in below,” McTavish claimed. “In Anaheim, not just (Ducks mentor) Dallas (Eakins), but the management aided me a good deal. They wanted me to occur back to junior and engage in more down the middle.”
Scouts loved McTavish main up to the NHL draft. A person scout in comparison him to Nazem Kadri mainly because he’s acquired that aggressive streak to his sport, but can devastate a team with his shot and his engage in-driving. There was no consensus No. 3 decide for the 2021 draft at the rear of Owen Electrical power and Matty Beniers, but McTavish, at this stage in his growth, is trending in the direction of currently being a prosperous choose by Anaheim — a group that now has a promising foreseeable future with the likes of Trevor Zegras, Jamie Drysdale and Troy Terry, between other people.
If all goes to approach, McTavish is an early most loved to problem for the MVP title as an 18-yr-previous. He has skated with Kent Johnson and Mavrik Bourque on Canada’s “next line” and the team’s initially electricity-play device, recording a pair of goals from Russia in the preliminary round.
Canada hopes that warm perform proceeds when issues truly make any difference.