Thu Feb 06 10:07am EST
Émile Poirier has a long way to go before validating the Calgary Flames when it chose him No. 22 overall at the last NHL draft, but his four-goal game Wednesday attested to the 19-year-old's potential.
The Gatineau Olympiques forward essentially did whatever he wanted, scoring on four of his five shots on goal during a 7-2 win over the struggling Sherbrooke Phoenix. Poirier scored the first goal of each period, making a nifty backhand move for his first goal and playing keepaway in a congested area of the ice on his second. Following his hat trick tally early in the third, though, the potential future Flame did his best work, turning young defenceman Carl Neill inside-out and then deking Maxime Lagacé.
Poirier's skating might need a while to get up to NHL snuff, but there is little doubting his offensive acumen. His regular collaborator in Gatineau, Montreal Canadiens choice Martin Reway, has been out of the lineup for nearly a month, yet Poirier is continuing to produce. The 'mortarboard trick' gave him 36 goals and 70 points over 48 games, meaning he's already matched his 18-year-old season point total with a quarter of the regular season yet to play.
Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet.