Pavel Bure's skating, speed and goal-scoring IQ separated him from the rest in his rookie class. So, too, did his experience.
By the time Bure got to the National Hockey League in 1991 he had already won gold for the Soviet Union in both the World Junior Championship (1989) and the World Championship (1990), and had played three full professional seasons for his Central Red Army team -- scoring 35 goals as a 19-year-old.
"At the World Juniors I was voted the best forward and some guys that participated in the World Juniors, they already played and played well in the NHL," Bure told NHL.com from Moscow. "I thought to myself, 'I can score more goals than those guys so I should be OK.'"
Bure needed just one NHL season to prove he was better than that. He won the Calder Trophy in 1992 after scoring 60 points in 65 games for the Vancouver Canucks.