On Saturday night, the Devils will play the Flyers for the first time this season. More notably, the top two picks of the 2017 NHL Draft will line up against each other for the first time.
Nico Hischier was drafted by the Devils with the first pick then the Flyers selected Nolan Patrick second overall. Devils GM Ray Shero is extremely happy with his pick.
"It's going to be real enjoyable watching Nico over his development on and off the ice," Shero said, via Tom Gulitti of NHL.com. "As he gets older, we'll see how he handles things, but he certainly is a great fit for us, and he's been a great addition. So, we'll see how it all plays out."
Hischier is the NHL's youngest player, having just turned 19 years old on January 4, and has been an immediate contributor to the Devils. This season he has 26 points in 41 games, with 8 goals and 18 assists. Patrick has started a bit slower, with 8 points in 33 games, split with 2 goals and 6 assists. Patrick is just 19 years old, too.
Shero hopes that fans will remain patient with each player, given that they're just half a season into their NHL careers and yet to escape their teenage years.
"Don't judge Nolan Patrick or Nico Hischier," Shero said. "They're kids, and they're going to be good players. For us, we're real happy with Nico. We were real fortunate to win the lottery. It gave us other options, and Nico's been fantastic. Having said that, I know Nolan Patrick will be a real good player."