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The Regina Pats have been the talk of the hockey world a lot this season, as 17-year-old phenom Connor Bedard looks set to become the NHL’s next number one overall draft pick and future superstar. Somewhat lost in the shuffle of that conversation is the play of one of his teammates with the Pats, a Capitals prospect. Alexander Suzdalev.

Suzdalev made sure his talents were on full display Saturday night when the 2022 third-round pick dazzled the crowd with a between-the-legs shot that tied Regina’s game against the Portland Winterhawks. The highlight was the savvy Swede’s 23rd of the season, behind only Bedard on the team.

The go-ahead goal came with 12:37 left in the second period to make it a two-goal game. On the play, Suzdalev picks up a loose puck in front of the Portland net after a snap, drags it between his legs, and then drives it home under the open right pad of the net.

In his debut season in the WHL, Suzdalev scored 53 points (23 g, 30 a) in 40 games. He ranks second on the Pats in total points behind only Bedard (77). The Russian-born, Swedish-born winger has spent most of the season away from Bedard on the team’s second line.

Suzdalev’s rise away from Bedard was recently highlighted by being named the WHL’s Rookie of the Month for December after scoring 17 points in ten games. Bedard played in just two December games for the Pats, having been away from Team Canada for most of the month on World Junior duty.

The 18-year-old striker is not afraid of luxury. He talked about it at Capitals Development Camp and later showcased his skills at Rookie Camp, showing off his favorite tricks on the ice at the MedStar Capitals IcePlex.

“I’m a skilled offensive player who likes to be creative and create scoring chances,” he told Mike Vogel. “Hockey is such a tight game, small spaces, but I like to be creative.”

A goal between the legs definitely qualifies as creative.

Screenshot via @reginapatshockey/Instagram


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