Everyone knows Edmonton Oilers star Connor McDavid is a fast skater, but his latest highlight on Saturday shows once more that he’s capable of making plays almost no one else can.
The Oilers captain scored one goal in his team’s 4-3 loss to the Calgary Flames in the most recent edition of the Battle of Alberta, really showing off his speed. In the first period, McDavid picked the puck up at his own blue line, raced across the ice past Flames defensemen Noah Hanifin and Travis Hamonic and put the most subtle of dekes on goaltender Cam Talbot before scoring glove-high to take a 2-1 lead.
McDavid’s speed should come as a surprise to no one: he has won the league’s fastest skater competition at All-Star Weekend three years running with lap times as fast as 13.31 seconds. On Saturday’s goal, though, Sportsnet clocked the superstar’s breakaway pace at 44.2 kilometers per hour, which translates to nearly 27.5 mph. The Athletic’s Dom Luszczyszyn pointed out in the aftermath that high-end speed skaters glide only slightly faster than McDavid did on that play.
The Guinness Book of World Records shows that Russian speed skater Pavel Kulizhnikov holds the men’s record for fastest speed skating along 500 meters at 33.61 seconds, which meant he averaged 53.56 km/h (33.28 mph) along the route. While McDavid did not travel nearly as far for his goal on Saturday, the fact that he neared top speeds that speed skaters reach without using their specialized equipment is mind-boggling.
McDavid’s goal on Saturday increased his league-leading point total this season to 71 in 47 games. If the NHL does not allow players to participate in the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, he could have a future with the Canadian speed skating team.
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