Presented by Nationwide Insurance Agent Jeff Vukovich
For the first time in their respective NHL careers, Connor Bedard and Connor McDavid will square off against each other when the Chicago Blackhawks visit the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday at Rogers Place.
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There's mutual respect between the two Canadian-born stars, each of whom were dubbed as generational talents entering their draft years.
"What he's done in the last eight years is obviously remarkable," Bedard said. "He's going to go down as one of the best players ever."
"It looks like he’s handling everything really well," McDavid told reporters. "Obviously, there are things going on there in Chicago, and he’s handled it really well. He’s playing at a very high level."
Bedard is a hockey nut, and it's no secret McDavid is one of the players he likes to study, even if he has a hard time incorporating some of the things he does on the ice.
"I try to watch all the time," Bedard said. "I wish I could implement; I don't think I can move that fast or anything. He's the best player in the world and he's so fun to watch. The stuff he does every shift, it's crazy. Someone I love to watch, love to watch those games. Him and Leon Draisailt, they've got pretty good chemistry, too, so it's fun to watch."
Bedard is an 18-year-old kid, but he doesn't carry himself like one. He's dedicated to his craft, like every great player is and should be.
There are moments where Bedard still finds himself in awe of players like McDavid and Sidney Crosby, who's his childhood idol. But rarely does it come on the ice, or at least when the game is going on.
"Once you're playing the game, it's hockey and you can't really be thinking about it too much," Bedard said. "But before the game and going into a faceoff or something, it's definitely pretty special. I feel pretty fortunate for those opportunities."