Auston Matthews Isn’t The Only Player To Dominate Their Debut
Auston Matthews was on another planet last night in his NHL debut, becoming the first player in the modern era of the NHL to score four goals in his debut. The first overall pick of the draft scored his first goal at the 8:21 mark of the first period.
Matthews first career NHL goal pic.twitter.com/LlRrY8dNuk
— Stephanie (@myregularface) October 12, 2016
He followed that with another one fewer than six minutes later.
Auston Matthews gets his second goal of the first period. Unbelievable. pic.twitter.com/Z1hAct2TSL
— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) October 12, 2016
Matthews followed it up with this goal …
hat trick for Matthews pic.twitter.com/bpySQgRkTB
— Stephanie (@myregularface) October 13, 2016
… and then this one later in the third period for his fourth of the night.
first player to ever score 4 goals in his NHL debut pic.twitter.com/X9o5uqvpBn
— Stephanie (@myregularface) October 13, 2016
In typical Toronto hockey fashion, the Maple Leafs went on to lost to the Senators in overtime, spoiling what was a historic night for the rookie making his debut. Matthews had himself a night, but is it the top rookie debut ever?
Here are five other debuts since 2000 that give Matthews a run for his money.
Stephen Strasburg hurls a gem:
Quick, can you name the first player to homer off of Stephen Strasburg in his career? If you said Delwyn Young, not only are you correct, you need to get a life, man. Young’s blast was the lone blip on the radar for the highly-touted pitching prospect out of San Diego State University. Before the Pirates were #good, Strasburg fanned 14 over seven innings, while allowing four hits and two runs, both of which came off the Young homer. Has Strasburg lived up to the hype? It depends on who you ask, but the 14 strikeouts from his debut remain tied for a career-high, which he matched last season against Philadelphia.
Have yourself a day, Anquan:
Want to know how long Anquan Boldin has been around for? He played with Emmitt Smith when he was with the Cardinals in 2003 and his QB was Jeff Blake. While the Hall of Fame running back had an OK game in the Cardinals 42-24 loss rushing for 64 yards on 13 attempts, it was the rookie out of Florida State selected in the second round that stole the show. Boldin saw 14 targets and caught 10 of them for two scores and 217 yards in his debut. The 217 yards remain the single-most that he’s recorded in a game, but in 2008 he saw 19(!) targets and in 2007, he caught 14 balls on 17 targets to set a personal high for his career.
Before Gary Sanchez took over the league in 2016, it was rookie Trevor Story that started off the 2016 with a bang – literally. Story hit two home runs in his first two major league at-bats against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The debut was solid enough, but Story followed it up with hitting five home runs in his next five games, giving him seven home runs in the Rockies first week of the season. Story is ready for his second chapter, as he finished with 27 home runs in his rookie campaign before having an injury force his season to come to an abrupt end in late July.
MCW downs the Heat:
Remember last year when the Sixers almost took down the Warriors? Philadelphia hasn’t seen that much excitement over a sports team in years. Well, since Oct. 30, 2013, to be precise. The Heart were coming off back-to-back championships, and the Sixers had the privilege to open their season against them. Enter Michael Carter-Williams, who went 6-10 from the floor, including 4-6 from behind the arc and 6-8 from the charity stripe, notched 22 points, 12 assists, seven boards, nine steals and one turnover in his NBA debut to leads the Sixers over the defending champs. It was the greatest game – and season – of MCW’s career, as he won the Rookie of the Year that year.
Unlike the other debuts, Troy Grosenick’s debut wasn’t anticipated or really even expected. Grosenick was giving starting goalie Antti Niemi a rest and was the backup goalie while Alex Stalock was on the shelf. In his NHL debut, on Nov. 11, 2014, Grosenick stood on his head against the Carolina Hurricanes, stopping all 45 shots he faced to record his first win and shutout of his career.The 45 saves broke the NHL record for most saves in a debut shutout, per Sportsnet’s Darren Millard.
His father was just a little bit happy after the game.
This is what sports are all about.
— Brodie Brazil (@brodiebrazilCSN) November 17, 2014
Grosenick has played only one other game in his career – two days after his debut – and allowed three goals on 13 shots.
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