As the debate rages as to whether or not Mitch Marner should play with the Toronto Maple Leafs next year or head back to the London Knights, the Canadian Hockey League has done their best to make a case for themselves. While CHL officials insist that this tournament has been around for countless decades and that London’s inclusion this year was merit-based and part of the natural process, it seems rather fishy that a special “Memorial Cup” be hosted in Red Deer, Alberta at such a convenient time.
Clearly, this ‘Tournament of Champions’ was an attempt to give Marner some tougher opponents and make him realize he’s not ready to jump to the pros yet.
It has not worked.
|1-0||1||13:51||Aaron Berisha||Matthew Tkachuk||Mitch Marner||Link|
|2-0||1||16:39||Christian Dvorak||Olli Juolevi||Mitch Marner||Link|
|3-0||1||18:31||Christian Dvorak||Olli Juolevi||Mitch Marner||Link|
|4-0||2||13:04||Mitch Marner||Christian Dvorak||Aiden Jamieson||Link|
|6-0||2||18:45||Mitch Marner||Christian Dvorak||Link|
That’s five points in less than 25 minutes. In his first ever Memorial Cup game, Marner was a point shy of tying a single-game record shared by three players and not touched in the past 24 years. Marner is already a little less than a third of the way to the single tournament points record with three more games to go. That’s pretty, pretty good.
Marner was named the OHL’s regular season MVP after scoring 116 points in 57 games. People didn’t think it would last, so he was named the OHL’s playoff MVP after scoring 44 points in 18 games. If tonight is any indication, he’s well on his way to grabbing a third MVP in the same season. The only two others to do that in the past twenty years? Brad Richards and Corey Perry, who were both on Draft+2 seasons and both became star players.
London ended up winning tonight’s game 6-2, by the way. Marner didn’t get points on either Red Deer goal.