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Connor Bedard is undeniably a superstar

By JennG –, CC BY-SA 2.5,
In 52 games, rookie Connor Bedard has 51 points.

The Bears are having a disastrous season. After some expected they were going to win the division, they have now plummeted to worst in the NFC North instead. 

The Bulls are dysfunctional and can’t find their rhythm early into the season, and there are heavy concerns about keeping Billy Donovan.

The White Sox are probably the most embarrassing franchise in sports as of right now. 

The Blackhawks are last in the division, but there’s a diamond in the rough; his name is Connor Bedard. 

This up and coming icon is an 18-year-old from North Vancouver in Canada. Born in the same year as some students here in 2005, he is a first line center in the National Hockey League, where the people don’t expect anything from you until you’re in your 20s. The question I hear over and over again from family and friends that loosely follow the topic of hockey is “Is this Bedard kid the real deal?”

Let’s take a dive into that debate. 

Bedard’s stats headed into the NHL did not disappoint. For example, when he played in the World Junior Championships earlier in the calendar year, he had 23 points in seven games for Team Canada. That’s the most points anyone’s tallied in a World Junior tournament since Markus Naslund of Sweden 30 years ago. Bedard’s dominance with the Regina Pats doesn’t need an explanation, either. 57 games, 71 goals, 72 assists, 143 points. The runner up? Chase Wheatcroft from the Prince George Cougars, with 107, regardless of the fact that Wheatcroft had an extra 11 games too. 

It also helps when you’re getting credit from the higher-ups. Or in this case, the greatest hockey player of all time, Wayne Gretzky.

“I think he stepped in nicely, and he’s been everything that everybody thought he was going to be,” said Gretzky. “And he might be even better than we thought.”

From a personal perspective, I have been impressed by this young man. He seems to have developed great traits that most NHL veterans still struggle with. He has a unique talent where he can change the angle of his shot, termed a “toe drag release.” If a defender is in his way, he moves the puck down the blade to create a more open lane for the puck to find the net. Although he has many abilities that set him apart from competition, this is the one the media, and personally I believe, is the most impressive artifact of Bedard.

Last but certainly not least, his early career in the NHL is off to a great start. It might be a small sample size, but through 19 games, Bedard is well ahead of the points leaderboard with 17. The runner up is Minnesota product Logan Cooley with 13. He has also outscored any rookie by 4 goals thanks to his league leading 10 goals.

It’s no longer a prediction, but more an expectation. Chicago is in for a treat for the next decade if they can build around this superstar Connor Bedard.

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About the Contributor
Luke Jorden
Luke Jorden, Reporter
Luke Jorden is a senior at Palatine High School. He is a play by play sports broadcaster in the broadcasting club here at PHS. Jorden also has jobs with two other sports franchises and a high school hockey network. He is very passionate about anything sports, whether watching or playing, as he enters his final year on the District hockey team and the lacrosse team here. Being a journalist is something Jorden enjoys because he can tell stories on paper in a way he can’t on video. He aspires to be a play by play announcer for a major team or network one day.

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    Adam DMar 15, 2024 at 3:49 pm

    Connor Bedard for the Calder