December 11, 2013
The diehards who faithfully turn out for the Ottawa 67's during their displacement to the Canadian Tire Centre are used to seeing a 16-year-old standout from the London, Ont., area do unique things with the puck.
Tuesday was special, though, since there were two, Travis Konency and his good friend, the Oshawa Generals' Mitchell Vande Sompel. Konecny, as the OHL's No. 1 overall pick, has done almost without fail, furnished a wow moment that let those among the announced crowd of 1,634 feel smart for showing up. The Clachan Comet produced another piece of virtuosity, dangling and deking by defenceman Stephen Desrocher before roofing the puck by Carolina Hurricanes-drafted goalie Daniel Altshuller.
That was only a too little, too late response to the big night from Vande Sompel, the offensive defenceman whom the Generals took with their No. 14 overall choice in the OHL priority selection.
That came during the second period when Vande Sompel was omnipresent. The 16-year-old London, Ont., native put the Generals ahead by picking a corner on the power play, then working a give-and-go to create a rebound opportunity for Bradley Latour (starting at 48 seconds).
The youngster also made up for a mistake by racing back to to pokecheck Ottawa's Brendan Bell on a wraparound attempt that came after goalie Daniel Altshuller made three separate saves on a short-handed breakaway (starting at 1:36).
Consider those some hints at future stardom that might grow in the remembering once Konency and Vande Sompel find their level, perhaps at the next level.
Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet. Please address any questions, comments or concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org.