Chris Wagner (via NHL/YouTube)
Anaheim Ducks rookie Chris Wagner suited up for his sixth career game Sunday night, and he made an incredible impact by flipping New Jersey Devils defenseman Jon Merrill into the space between the player benches. On the follow-through of the hit, Wagner ended up perched atop the boards, staring at his handiwork.
The first career highlight for Anaheim Ducks rookie Chris Wagner isn't a beautiful goal or a crisp tape-to-tape pass for his first NHL point. Rather, the 6-foot, 200-pound Wagner made his way onto the highlight reel with a massive check on New Jersey Devils defenseman Jon Merrill -- one that sent Merrill flipping into the space between the two benches.
Wagner, who has played just six games this season and in his third straight game Sunday night, delivered the hit little more than two minutes into the Ducks' game against the Devils, and he was rewarded by Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau with the second most ice time of his young career. You can check out the hit, and the hilarious follow-through, below:
The look on the face of Ducks winger Jakob Silfverberg just about says it all, right? If the camera would have stayed on him a bit longer, we almost certainly would have seen him laughing on the bench. Corey Perry, seated just beside the play, looked extremely pleased with the hit.
Where Merrill ends up is one thing, but Wagner finishing the check perched atop the boards is great.
Wagner was a fifth-round pick, 122nd overall, of Anaheim in 2010 and his six game stint with the Ducks has been the first of his career. In the AHL this season, Wagner has 15 goals and 28 points in 48 games.