McKenzie: Nathan MacKinnon 'destined for superstardom sooner rather than later'
After having his praises sung by New York Islanders star forward John Tavares, Nathan MacKinnon received the highest of endorsements from TSN hockey insider Bob McKenzie, who told TSN 1050 on Tuesday afternoon that the "sky's the limit" for the 19-year-old.
"I just feel like Nathan MacKinnon can be one of the very best players in the game. And I realize he’s very young and you don’t want to burden anybody with expectations that are too great, but what we saw of him in the playoffs and he just took off ... and all the reports I've gotten this summer is physically he’s becoming a beast. That he’s really getting a lot stronger. He’s physically maturing. He’s already got dynamic speed and strength, but I think the workouts that he’s done this year with Andy O’Brien and working with Sidney Crosby and Matt Duchene and all of those guys that time in Vail, Colorado in the off-season, I think he’s even going to take another quantum leap forward from what we saw in the playoffs....
"Again, you hate with a 19 going on 20-year-old kid to put unrealistic expectations on him, and there’s going to be some ups and downs to his game, but I think he’s got the tools to be one of the most exciting, most dynamic players in the game and I won’t be surprised if he plays like a prime time guy that’s one of the top 10-15 guys in the National Hockey League this year."
McKenzie added he feels MacKinnon possesses an "insatiable desire to really be excellent and to dominate," and concluded by saying, "This kid’s destined for superstardom and is probably going to do that a lot sooner rather than later.”
As an 18-year-old rookie, MacKinnon recorded 24 and 39 assists in 82 games. With the progress he appears to have made this summer, and the departure of center Paul Stastny, hockey fans may be tuning in to witness the emergence of hockey's next great player in Colorado this season.
[H/T Nichols On Hockey]
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