Curtis Lazar’s having a pretty good year.
After representing Canada at the World Juniors and scoring one of the most famous goals in Memorial Cup history, Lazar added to his accolades on Monday by cracking Ottawa’s 23-man roster to start the season.
Lazar, 19, was Ottawa’s first-round pick (17th overall) in 2013 and made the team thanks to an impressive preseason showing, edging out the likes of Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Matt Puempel, one of the club’s first-round picks (24th overall) in 2011.
A talented scorer with WHL Edmonton, Lazar led the Oil Kings to a Memorial Cup championship last year and did it in style, scoring the game-winning goal in the longest game in tournament history — a triple-OT semifinal over Val-d’Or, which lasted 183:57.
“It’s the first overtime goal I’ve ever scored in junior hockey. I still have to digest it. They took my stick. It’s going to the Hall of Fame and that’s pretty cool,” Lazar said, per NHL.com. “We have something special from this team every night and it was my turn tonight. I capitalized on the opportunity.”
Lazar isn’t the only youngster on Ottawa’s opening-night roster. Cody Ceci, the 20-year-old blueliner taken at the ’12 draft, is also there, along with Mika Zibanejad (21) and Mark Stone (22).