CALGARY -- Plymouth Whalers goalie Alex Nedeljkovic never has seen live any of the three goals scored by New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur, but admits to watching replays on the Internet every chance he gets.
"I've always wanted to score a goal and I keep that in the back of my head sometimes and envision myself doing it," Nedeljkovic said. "Marty was my favorite goalie growing up and still is. Just the way he plays the game and the accomplishments he'd had … it's been an incredible career."
Nedeljkovic (6-foot, 182 pounds) acknowledged he blew his one good opportunity to score a goal, during his midget-minor season.
"I had one chance to score a goal that year when our opponent pulled their goalie and the faceoff was in our end," Nedeljkovic said. "Our center won the faceoff back to me but I wasn't expecting it. So I collected it but whiffed on the shot and the puck just cleared the zone.
"Now I'm a little more aware that when the faceoff is in our end and the opposing net is empty, if that opportunity would ever come up when they pull their goalie I'll make a better attempt at it. But the chance has to be clear … I wouldn't force a chance to get a goal."
Nedeljkovic, who will play for Team Cherry at the BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game on Wednesday (9 p.m. ET, NHLN-US, Sportsnet) at Scotiabank Saddledome, said he was proud to earn the No. 5 rating among North American goalies on NHL Central Scouting's midterm rankings released Monday.
But now it's time to move up the charts.
"I was happy with the rankings and honored to be on the list and be as high as I was," Nedeljkovic said. "But I'll use the No. 5 ranking as motivation. I think anybody ranked feels they can do a lot better than where they are slotted. I'll take it and not focus on it that much, use it as motivation to get to that No. 1 spot."