|View single post by lobo316|
|Posted: Wed Oct 19th, 2016 05:01 am||
|The Great One sees greatness in Connor McDavid.
Speaking with The Globe and Mail, the NHL's all-time leading score didn't hold back on his adulation.
"I don't think there's any question that Connor's the best 19-year-old hockey player I've ever seen and I saw (Mark) Messier, I saw (Mario) Lemieux, I saw (Guy) Lafleur," Gretzky said. "This kid is special."
Gretzky - who earlier this month was named vice-chair of Oilers Entertainment Group - will now have the opportunity to observe McDavid up close.
"Now, it's going to take time. He's still only 19," Gretzky continued. "But he has everything in place to become the best player in the National Hockey League and go on to win some championships for the Edmonton Oilers."
By scoring six points in the first two games of the season, McDavid became the first Oilers player to do so since 1987. That feat was last accomplished by, of course, Gretzky. And on Monday, McDavid was named the NHL's first star of the week as a result.
It's one of many accolades that Gretzky sees on McDavid's horizon, noting that championships are what separates the greats from the truly elite. Gretzky captained the Oilers to four Stanley Cups and believes McDavid has an exceptional opportunity to return hockey's Holy Grail to Edmonton for the first time since 1990.
"But what I'm saying is if you want to get that elite status where they say you're Bobby Orr or you're Jean Beliveau to me you've got to win a Stanley Cup," Gretzky said. "Winning a Stanley Cup is important and you should never lose sight of that fact."