The moment you watch Tri City Americans power forward Jordan Messier hit the ice, you are instantly reminded of a young Mark Messier because of the name on the back of his jersey.
But that may not be where the comparison ends. As the second cousin of the legendary NHL Hall of Famer, he has size at 6'2", 192 lbs, similar junior statistics and a bit of a mean streak as well.
As a 15-year old, while playing with the Midget AAA Notre Dame Hounds, Messier put up superb numbers scoring 23 goals and 71 points in 43 games. He finished fifth in league scoring, and helped guide the club to a 36-6-1-3 record and a Saskatchewan Midget AAA Championship.
Which is why the Tri City Americans selected him with their second-round pick in the 2007 WHL Bantam Draft.
Last year, Messier gained confidence in his rookie season with the Americans, and scored four goals and five points in the team's 11 playoff games. That confidence carried over for the 18-year-old power forward, who had a tremendous sophomore season scoring 23 goals and 47 points while leading the team to first overall in the WHL's Western Conference.
The kid uses his size and strength to fend off opposing players and can protect the puck with the best of them. He is an effortless skater, has great hockey sense and vision. He can throw them when needed and has a knack for scoring timely goals as he led the Americans with eight game winners this year.
He is truly the total package when it comes to a power forward playing the game of hockey.
Which is why NHL teams have him on their radar for the upcoming 2010 Entry Draft. He currently is ranked #115th overall by Central Scouting, but don't be surprised to see his stock rise, as he and his Tri City teammates are enjoying a spectacular run through the WHL playoffs right now.
Until then, the big right winger from Canmore, Alberta will continue to do what he does best.
And that is play the game of hockey and make life miserable for his opponents.