Because the NHL started a second part of enlargement in 1991, there have been 10 gamers who can say they have been the primary draft choose in a franchise’s historical past.
Each one performed in at the least 455 video games, and 5 — Tampa Bay’s Roman Hamrlik, Ottawa’s Alexei Yashin, Anaheim’s Paul Kariya, Nashville’s David Legwand and Minnesota’s Marian Gaborik — racked up 600 or extra factors.
Seventeen years after the Wild and Blue Jackets have been born, the NHL added a 31st franchise within the Vegas Golden Knights. And on June 23, 2017, normal supervisor George McPhee stood on stage on the United Middle and introduced that Cody Glass was the primary choose in his crew’s historical past.
Not fairly two years later, Glass has returned to the Windy Metropolis and slot in seamlessly with the Chicago Wolves, scoring 6 objectives in 13 video games, together with the game-winner in extra time towards Iowa in Recreation 1 of a second-round Calder Cup playoff collection.
“He is been an important addition to our crew,” linemate Tye McGinn stated. “Cannot say sufficient good issues about him. He is an important child on and off the ice. … Vegas has an important participant on their fingers.”
Out of nowhere
Talking with Glass is not like talking with most 20-year-olds. There is a Jonathan Toews-like maturity right here that figures to take him a good distance.
For proof, think about this: When requested about his heroes rising up, Glass talked about his dad first.
“They’re very, very shut,” stated Mike Johnston, who coached Glass for 3 years with the Portland Winterhawks within the Western Hockey League. “His dad sacrificed rather a lot — each work-wise and time-wise — so Cody may keep in hockey. Cody discovered to understand that for positive.”
Stated Glass, whose father is a postal service: “My dad was a giant hero of mine. Simply battling by means of on daily basis at work and placing me by means of hockey.”
Glass’ meteoric rise started because of a 32-goal, 62-assist marketing campaign with the Winterhawks in 2016-17. Earlier than that, the Manitoba native was barely on anybody’s radar and thought of solely a “C Prospect.”
“I used to be making an attempt to be a second- or third-round choose — tops,” Glass stated. “After which clearly pushed my method as much as the sixth general choose. …
“To be the first-ever choose of an enlargement crew is particular. It does not occur fairly often, so it was a really big day for me and my household.”
Glass continued thriving in Portland — racking up 37 extra objectives and 65 assists in 2017-18 — however this season he suffered an harm that compelled him to overlook about two months. He returned for a season-ending playoff recreation March 30, then was on his approach to Chicago to play for the Wolves.
Six days after Portland’s season got here to an finish, Glass suited up in his skilled debut at Milwaukee. All he did that night time was rating a pair of objectives whereas being positioned right into a top-six position.
Glass is now centering the Wolves’ second line. His ice consciousness, skating capacity and 200-foot recreation are on show each night time, and he is a giant cause coach Rocky Thompson’s squad is simply 2 victories from the convention ultimate.
“His imaginative and prescient and skill to make performs is excellent,” stated Johnston, who compares Glass to Nashville’s Ryan Johansen. “Cody will not have (Ryan’s) weight to him as a result of he has a slimmer body. He obtained knocked down rather a lot when he was a younger child in our league. Wasn’t sturdy on the puck.
“However he is labored arduous these final couple summers … spending further time within the weight room to develop his core power and his first couple of steps so he can separate from guys.”
Glass’ greatest second to date got here Wednesday when he pounded residence the game-winner towards Iowa with 1:21 remaining in extra time. Probably the most spectacular a part of the play was how Glass slyly discovered a bit of open ice simply 20 toes from the web, then rapidly obtained into capturing place as McGinn’s move zipped by means of two Wild gamers.
Glass admitted he “blacked out” for a few seconds after the puck hit the again of the web.
“I am not even positive what I did for a celly,” Glass chuckled.
Stated veteran ahead T.J. Tynan: “I am unable to even think about coming in on the age he’s. It is unimaginable what he is capable of do.”
The longer term
It is going to be attention-grabbing to see what a loaded Vegas squad decides to do with Glass subsequent season.
They may slot him right into a third- or fourth-line position, or simply as simply permit him to develop with the Wolves as one among their core gamers.
In some methods, it isn’t a lot totally different from when the Blackhawks have been deciding whether or not to begin Alex DeBrincat within the minors in 2017. Coach Joel Quenneville’s workers ended up preserving DeBrincat, taking part in him totally on the third line and watching him lead the crew with 28 objectives.
“I really feel like confidence is a large factor,” Glass stated. “So being within the AHL — taking part in top-line minutes, prime energy play — it will provide you with the boldness going into that subsequent stage.
“However then once more I really feel like in case you’re able to play within the NHL, then you definitely’re prepared. You’ve got simply obtained to get that chance.”
That chance most definitely will arrive in some unspecified time in the future for Glass. And when it does, he figures to get pleasure from a protracted, fruitful profession.