Bedard greatest ever at 15
by Andrew Podnieks|06 MAY 2021
Connor Bedard lets go a shot in Canada's game against Latvia.
photo: Ryan McCullough / HHOF-IIHF Images
There have been 19 players 15 years of age or younger who have appeared in a U18 game since the IIHF introduced the tournament to its international calendar in 1999. Many have gone on to fine careers, but Canada’s Connor Bedard has been the most dominant at that age in this tournament. 

Some notes on the youngest of the young:

*Bedard is the first 15-year-old to win a medal. The previous highest finishes were John Tavares with Canada and Andrei Vasilevski with Russia (4th place).

*The youngest player to score a goal was Mikkel Boedker of Denmark.

*Vasilevski is the only 15-year-old goalie in U18 history.

*Bedard has obliterated all scoring records for a 15-year-old. The previous best was Tavares with 5 points, and Samuel Knazko (SVK) and Markus Soberg (NOR) with 3. Bedard recorded 14 (7 goals, 7 assists, also both records).

*Bedard is the only 15-year-old to record a hat trick in a game, and his 5 points in a game (vs. Czech Republic) is also one for the record books that isn’t likely to be equalled any time soon.

*Bedard had four multi-point games (0+2 vs Latvia, 2+3 vs. Czechs, 3+0 vs. Sweden, 1+1 vs. Russia). All other players combined have four. Tavares has two (1+2 vs. Norway, 1+1 vs. Russia). Knazko (2+0 vs. France), and Soberg (1+1 vs. Slovakia) have the others.

Here is a quick summary of the performance of those 19 super-teens at their U18 debut (ordered youngest to oldest):

Name-country-U18 year-age at first game-gp-g-a-p-pim-finish

Pavlo Borysenko, UKR, 2002 U18, 14 years, 309 days—8-0-0-0-0-12th
Konstantin Zakharov, BLR, 2000 U18, 14 years, 349 days—5-0-0-0-2-10th
Andrei Kostitsyn, BLR, 2000 U18, 15 years, 71 days—6-0-0-0-4-10th
Igor Yegorov, UKR, 2002 U18, 15 years, 81 days—6-0-0-0-0-12th
Valentyn Lays, UKR, 2002 U18, 15 years, 94 days—6-0-0-0-4-12th
Mikkel Boedker, DEN, 2005 U18, 15 years, 120 days—6-1-1-2-6-10th
Olexander Skorokhod, UKR, 1999 U18, 15 years, 191 days—4-0-1-1-4-8th
John Tavares, CAN, 2006 U18, 15 years, 204 days—7-2-3-5-4-4th
Nino Niederreiter, SUI, 2008 U18, 15 years, 217 days—6-1-1-2-2-8th
Aliaksandr Syrei, BLR, 2004 U18, 15 years, 226 days—6-0-0-0-0-9th
Roman Graborenko, BLR, 2008 U18, 15 years, 233 days—6-0-0-0-2-9th
Samuel Knazko, SVK, 2018 U18, 15 years, 255 days—5-2-1-3-0-7th
Andrei Vasilevski, RUS, 2010 U18, 15 years, 263 days—5-2-0-3-272:03-2.65-4th*
Connor Bedard, CAN, 2021 U18, 15 years, 284 days—7-7-7-14-2-G
Luca Cunti, SUI, 2005 U18, 15 years, 284 days—6-1-1-2-0-9th
Erik Cernak, SVK, 2013 U18, 15 years, 326 days—6-0-2-2-8-9th
Flavian Dair, FRA, 2018 U18, 15 years, 338 days—6-1-0-1-12-10th
Jonas Siegenthaler, SUI, 2013 U18, 15 years, 348 days—5-0-0-0-8-6th
Markus Soberg, NOR, 2011 U18, 15 years, 357 days—6-1-2-3-4-9th