Finland's Patrik Laine is one of the top prospects for 2016 NHL Draft and is expected to be one of the first three players taken. His most likely landing spot is the Winnipeg Jets at the No. 2 overall spot after Auston Matthews (most likely) goes to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Over the past couple of weeks, Laine has been playing for Finland at the World Hockey Championships in Russia, and on Saturday he had an opportunity to play against the host country in the semifinals. That also means he was getting a chance to go up against his favorite player, Alex Ovechkin.
Laine mentioned at the start of the tournament that Ovechkin was his favorite player that when he finally played a game against him at the tournament it would be the first time he ever saw him actually play other than highlights on the internet. During the game, which Finland ended up winning 3-1, Laine not only had an opportunity to play against Ovechkin, he was also checked by him at one point during the game.
That seemed to thrill Laine more than the win itself.
"I won't wash this jersey ever, because he hit me. It was nice to play against him."
Laine and Finland will play Canada for the gold medal.
Laine has been a dominant player in the tournament with seven goals and five assists in the 12 games.
He was also involved in one of the more controversial plays in the tournament when Canada's Corey Perry tripped him on what was called a "garbage play" by TSN analyst Ray Ferraro