How many kids grew up imagining getting drafted by their hometown team and their favourite team? Now how many actually get to live that? Broncos forward Coda Gordon got the pleasure of being drafted by the Calgary Flames today. He grew up cheering for the Flames and now he will have a flaming C jersey to call his own.
Interview with Calgary Flames prospect Coda Gordon (Download)
Some people have said that Gordon slid further than they expected. Does it really much matter? He was drafted into the NHL and now he will have every opportunity to move himself up the depth chart with his play. The Flames organization needs guys who can find the back of the net and that’s what Coda does better than many in his age group. He knows where he has to get better and is working at it, but he has the hockey sense and intelligence that you don’t get from training.
Ultimately the big thing with Gordon is hockey sense and execution. He knows where to be on the ice and gets results. The puck finds him in front of the net and he scores. Good passer, good shot, but the biggest thing about him is how smart of a player he is and how he just finds a way to produce.
The name that pops up to me in this situation is Mark Stone. He was a young player with good offensive instincts who fell somewhat in the draft because of questions about his skating. Stone worked his butt off to improve that skating and became one of the best players. Now all the experts think the Ottawa Senators stole him in the draft as a result. If Coda keeps working hard I bet they will be saying things like that about him too.
Again the bottom line is that Coda Gordon didn’t even know last year at this time if he would be a WHL player. Now he has a 30 goal season, was ranked by NHL Central Scouting, invited to the CHL Top Prospects game and was drafted by his hometown team. Did he fall a bit from where some had him ranked? Sure, but it’s a fantastic story and one that has a long way to go a very respectful and hard-working player.