There are little words to describe the show 19-year-old Tomas Hertl put on Tuesday night at the SAP Center in San Jose, but a few come to mind: mesmerizing, marvelous, masterful. He tied the San Jose Sharks‘ franchise record for goals in a game with four — in just his third-career NHL game — and he did it in incredible fashion.
Hertl’s first two goals of the game came in the second period, while the next two came in the third as he carved his mark in history in a matter of just 22 minutes. His fourth and final goal was something you think you’d only see in a video game — a brilliant between-the-legs top-shelf wrister that will most definitely find its way to NHL highlight reels for years to come.
His night had to beg the question: who is this kid and where did he come from? Well, he’s the NHL’s leading scorer thus far in the season with 6, and he’s from the Czech Republic. Get to know him, because he’s here to stay.
Sharks fans, if you haven’t seen this kid play I seriously implore you to tune in — and do it fast. He’s providing excellent scoring that the Sharks desperately needed, though it wouldn’t seem that way given their 9-2 win over the New York Rangers on Tuesday.
Many considered Hertl’s coming-out party to be his two-goal game on Saturday night against the Phoenix Coyotes. Oh, but were they ever wrong. His four-goal masterpiece is the most a Sharks player has scored since Owen Nolan on Dec. 19, 1995. He’s the youngest to score four in a game since Jimmy Carson of the 1988 Los Angeles Kings.
The native of Prague is still in the process of learning the English language, but he put his performance in perfect terms during his post-game interview: “This is a dream.” Hertl brought tears to the eyes of many fans who witnessed his truly incredible night, including his mother and girlfriend who were in attendance.
It may feel like a dream to Hertl and to Sharks fans alike, but this is the franchise’s reality. San Jose hit a home run by drafting Hertl, and he may become the NHL’s next all-world star. This is an extremely exciting time for San Jose Sharks hockey, and Hertl is leading the celebration.