The best rookie in the NHL and a superstar in the making comes into town for his only visit of the year as the Columbus Blue Jackets host the Vancouver Canucks.
There are very few players in the NHL that are by themselves worth the price of admission. Connor McDavid, Auston Matthews, and Columbus Blue Jackets own Seth Jones are just a few names that come to mind.
But tonight a new name comes to Columbus that is already on that list in my eyes. Vancouver Canucks rookie sensation Elias Pettersson is a must see player. Pettersson is one of just a handful of players that are worth the ticket price alone and tonight will be Jackets’ fans only chance to see him live in Nationwide Arena.
Pettersson is a superstar. He posses a shot that rivals Alex Ovechkin and Patrik Laine. His playmaking ability is off the charts as well and has created some amazing opportunities for his teammates including a bonkers, no look pass from his knees to Brock Boeser for a goal that also drew a penalty against Vegas in November.
Pettersson is coming off a five point performance agains the St. Louis Blues on Sunday. It was his second five point game in his young career. He is only the 6th rookie to put up two five point games in his rookie season since the NHL expanded in 66-67 and only the second player to do so before the end of December.
The 20-year-old Swede has 30 points in 26 games and is well on his way to winning the Calder Trophy this year. The next closest rookie in scoring is 11 points behind Pettersson with four more games played than the Canuck. This year the Calder race will be the biggest blowout since Alex Ovechkin’s 50 goal performance in the 2005-2006 season.
So if you can, get out tonight and go watch Elias Pettersson. He is one of the few players in the league worth the price of admission himself.