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BLOG: Draisaitl gets “burden off his back”

by Chris Wescott / Edmonton Oilers

Oilers third-overall pick in 2014 Leon Draisaitl scored his first NHL goal against the Carolina Hurricanes, and it just so happened to be the game-winning tally. That was a big moment for the 18-year-old.

“It was really exciting,” Draisaitl said. “That’s something that I think every hockey player as a kid dreams of. To make this happen tonight, with this team, is even more special for sure.”

Up until the goal, Head Coach Dallas Eakins says that Draisaitl was just going about his business. The goal was a big lift for the young centre.

“I thought he was fine,” Eakins said. “He was playing well, no issues. He was just going about his business. It was good that he stayed with that puck there. He had had a chance real quick and then to get it was obviously a big burden off his back. I don’t know if a kid that age ever in his life has gone that many games with only a point or two. It’s not mandatory for him to have points every night but it’s something that wears on those guys who are used to getting points.”

It may not have been the prettiest goal, but that doesn’t matter to Draisaitl. That’s a big moment no matter what it looked like.

“I don’t think it matters what kind of goals you score,” he said. “I think the important thing is that the goal is behind the goal line. It definitely wasn’t a pretty one. It was more of a greasy one, but I’ll definitely take it.”

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