In my weekly Ramblings, my favorite content is featuring the first NHL goals of players achieving their hockey dreams. Now that we’ve hit the summer, I took the opportunity to look back over the 2018-19 season and pick out my top ten first goals of the year. I don’t have an official rating scale, I chose the goals that best showed individual effort by the goal-scorer, which tended to favor the fast moves and wicked shots. Enjoy!
#10 – Not afraid of being a puck hog, Max Jones shows no fear of defenders before getting it to the net.
#9 – The kick-move to get the puck on his stick gets Carl Grundstrom into the 9th spot, and it being his first NHL game doesn’t hurt his case either.
#8 – I was on the fence as Christoffer Ehn fought off the defender for the puck, but that backhand sealed the deal to get him on the list.
#7 – Wraparound goals are a rare sighting these days so Sean Walker gets a nod from me for having the stones to go for it after getting into the dirty area.
#6 – I didn’t include many one-timers on the list, but if you tell me this isn’t the most perfect finish by Dean Kukan then you’re a liar. Bonus points for it being a game-tying goal in the playoffs.
#5 – Hard not to love a guy like Jayce Hawryluk working his ass off for every chance, including this one where he reaches past a defender and the goalie.
#4 – We’ve all seen this one on the highlight reels. A patient approach and an absolutely lethal snipe by Elias Pettersson in his first NHL contest.
#3 – I know, I know… A goal by Trevor Moore 2-on-1 goal ahead of Pettersson’s? Clearly some Leafs bias is present. But Moore straight-up beats a defender on his way in so he get’s the edge from me.
#2 – Fortune favors the bold. Straight out of Liiga, early in his first NHL season, and Antti Suomela decides to protect the puck and cut through the crease. Great finish.
#1 – Ryan Poehling’s first goal wasn’t overly memorable. Neither was his second. His third probably wouldn’t make this list on its own either. But the hat trick, plus a shootout beauty, all in his first game, and I have not problem bending the rules to put Poehling at the top of this list. What a night!
BONUS CONTENT – for the WORST first goal of the season, look no further than the Avalanche giving Mikhail Vorobyev a freebie
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