Connor McDavid is arguably the most heavily hyped prospect since Sidney Crosby, and he’s on track to represent Team Canada at the World Junior Championships despite only being 16-years-old. The WJC is a tournament typically reserved for the best 19-year-olds in the world.
Several NHL-caliber players lace up the skates for their respective countries on a yearly basis, and the level of competition is extremely high. That McDavid has not only been able to hang with players more than three or four years his senior is incredible. By all accounts, the hype surrounding him is not unwarranted either.
Retired scout Jack Ferguson spoke to Kevin McGran of The Toronto Star, and had this to say about the teenage phenom:
He’s the Next One, there’s no question about it. You can’t believe how good he is.
Columbus Blue Jackets prospect Kerby Rychel may be competing with McDavid for a roster spot, but he didn’t hesitate to shovel praise onto the youngster. Rychel was asked about McDavid by reporters, and had this to say according to NHL.com:
He’s an exceptional hockey player. He deserves to be here. He’s got tremendous skill. His speed is going to be a big factor on the big ice like this. He’s a phenomenal hockey player and we are lucky to have him here now.
No 16-year-old has represented Canada at the WJC since Crosby. Through 31 games in the OHL this season, McDavid has already amassed 50 points.