Sometimes, in sports, there are moments that happen that really just make us shake our heads and say “Did that actually just happen?” One of these moments happened last night in Jake Guentzel’s NHL debut with the Penguins. After being called up from WBS in the morning, he was set to play on a line with Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel. Not a bad place to start and go from there, right?
I don’t think Jake is gonna forget his first game any time soon, seeing as he scored not once, but twice. Let’s take a look at his first one.
That was so fun. Jake’s family is what it’s all about.
As the Rangers were trying to clear their defensive zone early in the game, the Penguins capitalized on a turnover.
As Derek Stepan was trying to push it along the boards, Trevor Daley jumped in to break it up. As Daley stepped up to play the puck, Jake Guentzel drifted back through the defensive zone, ready to move forward.
As Kessel circled back with the puck, Guentzel drives hard to the weak side, as all the Rangers players are congregating on the other side of the ice where the puck was
Guentzel takes the puck in stride from Kessel at the blue line and goes hard towards the net. Nick Holden is back covering that side of the ice and tries to stay with Jake.
Guentzel puts his head down and flat out blows past Holden. Not even fair, really.
As soon as Jake has the space and angle to take a shot once he is past Holden, he does, and Antti Raanta is gonna want that one back. It was a nice shot, but he should have had it.
You can see here from the camera at the far end of the ice, how Guentzel sensed the open side of the ice and shifted towards it when Kessel was looking to get him the puck. That’s just smart play, seeing how all 5 of the Rangers players were on one side of the ice.
Okay, we’ve gone over the goal, now let’s go over how great the Guentzel family is and how great this moment was.
Jake Guenztel's family after he scores 1 minute into his debut. Sometimes sports are cool. pic.twitter.com/A4m8J70Lwy— Dimitri Filipovic (@DimFilipovic) November 22, 2016
It's great to have you, Guentzel family. We're excited too! pic.twitter.com/CcKd7zdFp7— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) November 22, 2016
What a cool story and what a moment. A fun goal because of the moment, but definitely one that is much bigger because of the scene and the family and everything.
Jake Guentzel: it’s safe to say you’ve done a remarkable thing at the NHL level when you have the ability to make Mike Sullivan crack a smile behind the bench.
That look between Sullivan and Tocchet on Guenztel’s first goal is nice pic.twitter.com/1QqRgKOG8E— AOL Keyword: Mike (@mikeFAIL) November 22, 2016
Onto the next one, Jake. Let’s hope the Pens can get a win for you next time, too.