UMass' Cale Makar makes NHL history with playoff goal in Avalanche debut


Think you've had a busy few days? You've got nothing on Cale Makar.

The 20-year-old University of Massachusetts sophomore earned the Hobey Baker Award on Friday as the best player in college hockey. But he couldn't rest on his laurels: The Minutemen were in their first-ever Frozen Four and reached the NCAA championship game Saturday, falling to Minnesota-Duluth 3-0.

But again, Makar couldn't dwell in the past. The Colorado Avalanche, who drafted the star defenseman fourth overall in 2017, signed Makar to a three-year contract Sunday and thrust him into their lineup Monday night for Game 3 of their Stanley Cup Playoffs matchup with the Calgary Flames.

And in the first period at Pepsi Center, Makar delivered.

Makar's goal made him the first defenseman in NHL history to make his league debut in the playoffs and score a goal. He's just the seventh player ever to accomplish the feat, joining an impressive list of players.

Two things that made Makar's tally even sweeter: 1) It came against the Calgary native's hometown team, and 2) his parents were both in attendance to witness their son make history.

That's one way to get over a national championship loss.

The underdog Avs now own a 2-1 first-round series lead over the Flames, so we might be seeing more from the pride of UMass as the playoffs roll on.

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