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Oakville's Luke Evangelista plays in his first career NHL game; gets a point in his second

John Russell/Nashville Predators
John Russell/Nashville Predators

The day finally came for Oakville's Luke Evangelista: he got called up to the NHL and played in his first NHL game with the Nashville Predators.

Evangelista suited up for his first game earlier this week, on Feb. 28, in Nashville’s 3-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Evangelista played a total of 14 minutes and 28 seconds and was even granted one minute and 13 seconds of powerplay time.

He ended the night pointless but was on the ice for Nashville’s only goal and nearly scored the goal himself.

Nashville forward Mark Jankowski grabbed the puck in the offensive zone. Evangelista was wide open for a one-timer into an empty net, but Jankowski took the shot himself and scored.

Along with being on the ice for the team's only goal, Luke also laid a massive hit on future Hall of Famer Evgeni Malkin, knocking him to the ice.

Luke’s performance even caught the eye of Predators head coach John Hynes.

"I was really impressed with Luke," Hynes said. "He probably deserved a couple of goals tonight. Maybe on another night, they bounce his way, and they go in…It was a really good performance for him."

That’s pretty high praise from an experienced head coach after playing your first NHL game.

Evangelista wasn’t done there. In Nashville’s next game against the Florida Panthers, he picked up his first NHL point on the powerplay.

He slid a pass from the bumper spot in the slot to veteran Matt Duchene and Duchene one-timed the puck past former Vezina Trophy winner Sergei Bobrovsky to give Nashville a 1-0 lead and Luke’s first point in the big leagues.

Nashville eventually went on to win that game 2-1.