It’s a scene that’s played out dozens of times since Nikolaj Ehlers became a mainstay in the Winnipeg Jets’ forward contingent.
The 23-year-old Dane picking up the puck in his own end of the ice, dashing through the neutral zone, crossing over the opposing blue line before creating something dangerous around the opponent’s goalie. It’s edge-of-your-seat stuff.
Ehlers is a gifted talent with a set of afterburners that, when ignited, produce heart-stopping spurts over the course of a hockey game.
But I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know. Ehlers does a few things at an elite level that makes him a distinctive talent, not just with the Jets, but across the entire National Hockey League. Some of the things he does — zone exits and entries, for instance — don’t just get replaced.
While his name has popped up in numerous trade rumours, and even confirmed reports that general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff has (or at least had) been shopping one of Denmark’s finest, it’s important to point out that such a move would be regrettable.