Mackenzie Blackwood wasn't a goalie. He almost wasn't a hockey player.
Blackwood, the top-rated North American goalie in the NHL Central Scouting midterm rankings for the 2015 NHL Draft, grew up like many kids, trying his hand at multiple sports. At age 9 Blackwood said he stopped playing hockey to focus on lacrosse and snowboarding.
The hiatus was relatively short-lived, as a year later he said he was back to playing in house leagues in Thunder Bay, Ontario.
But even then he wasn't a goalie. That didn't come until at age 12, when Blackwood's VP Bearcats lost their goalie and needed someone to play the position.