With a great contract comes great responsibility.
When Johnny Gaudreau, the pride of Carneys Point, N.J., signed a six-year, $40 million contract with the Calgary Flames in October 2016, everything changed.
He went from being just a flashy "Johnny Hockey"-type figure to a core group leader. With quality people such as Gaudreau at the front of the pack, it’s easy to see why the Flames made the playoffs last season and have a shot at repeating this year.
He’s on pace to enjoy his best season yet in the NHL, with 69 points through 60 games with a plus-15. That’s a big reason why the Flames are squarely back in the playoff hunt as the season entered its final quarter.
The 24-year-old Gaudreau says he relishes the challenge of being a leader on a contender.