It wasn’t hype so much as a feeling of anticipation. A year ago, and for the first time ever, were the first two overall options in the NHL draft going to teams based around six miles away, and we weren’t all going to be in a treat to watch the competition evolve between the demons. # 1, Jack Hughes, and # 2 in Rangers, Cabo Kaku?
Well, the future clearly lies for the two 19-year-olds, which is very good considering one season of their NHL pasts has added to their biggest combined statistical failure of one or two in over two decades.
Hughes, who was mistaken early on being one of the top six at the age of 18, scored 21 points (7-14) for the Demons while Kakko, who had struggled to integrate into the North American game, scored 23 (10-23) in the other. Hudson’s side.
You have to go back to 1997 to find a draft in which the two best public selections are both players in the center and combined for fewer points in the year right after the selection than Hughes and Kakko did.
But did you know? If Hughes and Kaku tracked down the first two overall selections of that year, they would meet demons and rangers on a ferry in the middle of the Hudson River and dance the night away.
Because in 1997, the first public choice was Joe Thornton, on his way to the Hall of Fame despite a junior season 3-4 = 7 in Boston under Coach Pat Burns, who made the center a healthy scratch more than 20 times.
In 1997, the second public pick was Patrick Marlow, on his way to the Hall of Fame after a more representative new season in which he scored 32 points (13-19) to bring a total of 39 points for athletes who, after 23 seasons, are still in the league.
And let me tell you, Hughes was dancing the night away in the park on Thursday, scoring two goals and helping in an amazing tournament performance with goalkeeper Mackenzie Blackwood who saved for 47. Demon Triumph 4-3.
The youngster added muscle to his body through tireless work that allowed him to fight in those 50 to 50 zones, but Hughes never stopped moving his feet. He was dynamic and agile, on his toes the whole time while he thrived under coach Lindy Ruff, who had worked as an assistant for the previous three years on the other side of Hudson.
Hughes, who has six points (2-4) across three competitions, said, “My confidence level is clearly high.” “I think it’s always been loud, you know, but we do build and build personally.
“Lindy wants me to play a fast game, 200 feet, and he thinks I can play against all four lines. So for me, it was better to play when our streak is offense, so this is part of my game, goblin catching and twitching players.”
Hughes scored from the goal line when she cast a peek at a shaken Alexander Georgiev and slipped into the crease to give the Demons a 2–1 lead in 4:13 of a second, just 1:23 from the Rangers. Tied score. Hughes got his second goal in a break-up, sprinting to the left flank before a backhand went in through the five holes, after Jacob Trouba’s shot was blocked at the point, leading 3-1 at 8:38. Then after the Blueshirts were closed within 3-2, Hughes found Miles Wood on the right porch with an impressive diagonal look for a 4-2 goal in tough play at 16:00.
“The goblin was finding me,” Hughes said, as if he was just an innocent bystander. “It was a good time for our streak. We have to keep it going.”
Meanwhile, Kakko didn’t score a point, but he played a tough game. In fact, Finn was in leading 21-6 tries at 11:22 out of five times, as he and his teammates Philip Chittel (22-8) and Philip Digiusepe dominated the play without tick marks for shifts simultaneously. Kakko had a tough showdown on opening night, but looked comfortable with the disc and confident without it.
It was a bright spot tonight when the Rangers scored twice in Power Play by Big Boys Chris Crider and Mika Zipanegade, but few of their top guns are at the same power. Ryan Strom, who has had such a long time, was somehow on the ice for only one attempt from five to five Rangers at 12:48, according to Naturalstattrick.com. It seems impossible.
It’s still early. Early in the season, impossibly early in the careers of Hughes and Kaku, who are out to prove that last year was an aberration and that the future is ahead of them.
The present was just too good for Hughes.