It is only a 25-minute drive to the TD Garden from the house where Adam Gaudette grew up in Braintree, Mass., but the centre has travelled much farther than that to be here Tuesday night with the Vancouver Canucks.
It was this time two years ago that Gaudette, a 2015 fifth-round draft pick of the Canucks, scored a hat trick to help Northeastern University end a 30-year drought at the Beanpot, the famous college hockey tournament in February that features four major Boston schools.
On Monday, Gaudette was invited to read Northeastern’s starting lineup before the Huskies beat the Harvard Crimson to advance to a third straight Beanpot final next week against Boston University.
And on Tuesday night, he’ll have about 120 friends and family members cheering for him when the Canucks play the Boston Bruins.
Gaudette wasn’t expected to become a National Hockey League regular so soon. Or at all. But he has become the Canucks’ everyday third-line centre and arrived for his Boston homecoming with 23 points in 43 games while averaging 12:30 of ice time.