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Skills Competition

McDavid wins fastest skater at Skills Competition

Oilers forward becomes first back-to-back winner with a time of 13.454

by Corey Long / Correspondent

TAMPA -- Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid became the first back-to-back winner in the history of the Enterprise NHL Fastest Skater event in the 2018 GEICO NHL All-Star Skills Competition at Amalie Arena on Saturday.

McDavid, 21, finished his lap around the rink in a time of 13.454 seconds, just ahead of Tampa Bay Lightning forward Brayden Point, who finished in 13.579.

"It's fun. Obviously it's an event that I look forward to," McDavid said. "I like doing it. I just tried to go out there and not get hurt. I hadn't done anything in two days, so I wasn't looking to pull something or tweak something, but I was able to put up a decent time."


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Point led off the competition among the eight skaters and had the only time under 14 seconds until Buffalo Sabres forward Jack Eichel, who went seventh, posted a time of 13.828. 

McDavid, the final skater, wasn't confident he was going to catch Point.

"I kind of stumbled on the start," McDavid said. "I didn't feel really good about it and I thought that maybe I lost.

"It was a slow track for sure, the ice was a little bit soft but that's understandable ... we're in Tampa ... the humidity."

Video: Fastest Skater: McDavid dazzles for the win

Although Point was the crowd favorite, there were not many jeers when McDavid came out on top.

"[The fans] were nice to me," McDavid said. "I thought when I crossed the line there would be a big cheer which meant I lost, or there was going to be nothing which meant I won. Obviously, there was not much being said, which was a good thing for me."

It was also the second straight year McDavid edged a member of the Lightning. Last year, McDavid beat out Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov with a record time of 13.02 seconds.

Kucherov decided against a rematch on home ice and there were rumors that several other all-stars opted to skip the event rather than challenge McDavid. 

"I thought [Kucherov] was going to do it but I guess for whatever reason he didn't and that's understandable," McDavid said. "Like I said, there's a lot of guys that don't really want to do it just because they don't do a lot for two days and you don't want to hurt something."

Video: Fastest Skater: Point sets the tone early

McDavid, who is captain of the Pacific Division All-Stars, is the sixth player to win the event multiple times, joining Sergei Fedorov, Mike Gartner, Peter Bondra, Scott Niedermayer and Sami Kapanen.

"Obviously when you speak of those guys I think right away you just think of the speedsters of the NHL," McDavid said. "To have my name next to those guys is pretty cool."


Connor McDavid, Edmonton Oilers, 13.454 seconds

Brayden Point, Tampa Bay Lightning, 13.579

Jack Eichel, Buffalo Sabres, 13.828

Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado Avalanche, 14.056

Rickard Rakell, Anaheim Ducks, 14.181

Zach Werenski, Columbus Blue Jackets, 14.250

Noah Hanifin, Carolina Hurricanes, 14.317

Josh Bailey, New York Islanders, 14.413


Video: Enterprise NHL Fastest Skater Competition Recap

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