Outstanding, yet unexpected, Bubnick

SCOTT FISHER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:25 PM ET

BRANDON — Jimmy Bubnick: Memorial Cup leading scorer.

It’s gotta nice ring to it.

It’s just not one that most expected.

Even Bubnick himself.

“It sounds pretty good,” Bubnick said after a four-point outing against the Brandon Wheat Kings gave the Calgary Hitmen centre a tournament-high eight points.

“Before the tournament started, I never would have thought about a punchline like that.

“It sounds good to me, but I’m not taking anything for granted. We’ve got a big game Friday so this tournament is far from over.”

Still, Bubnick, who had just two goals and 14 points through 23 WHL playoff games this spring, has taken his game to an entirely different level.

He’s outscored all seven Team Canada world junior stars — including Taylor Hall — although Hitmen teammate Brandon Kozun has only played a handful of meaningless shifts due to an ankle injury.

Which makes Bubnick’s production that much more impressive ... and needed.

With Kozun, the CHL’s top scorer unavailable, alternate scoring sources have become a must for the team’s survival.

It wouldn’t be asking too much to expect proven scorers like Joel Broda and Kris Foucault to step up and take on a more offensive role.

But Bubnick’s increased production has been off the charts.

The Atlanta Thrashers draft pick has been solid throughout the playoffs. He credits getting a bounce here and there for the lofty numbers.

“The whole playoffs, we just stuck with the system,” Bubnick said.

“Now we’re just getting the bounces. It’s just a matter of getting the bounces. Hockey’s a weird game like that.

“We’ve got a good thing going.”

After scoring twice in a Game 7 victory in the opening round of the WHL playoffs, Bubnick went 17 games before lighting the lamp again in the club’s second tilt of the Memorial Cup.

Linemate Kris Foucault said the Thrashers could have a diamond in the rough.

“Jimmy’s played great all year,” Foucault said. “Now the puck’s starting to go in the net for him.

“I hope Atlanta’s here watching him because he deserves a good shot there.”

scott.fisher@sunmedia.ca


Photos