It can be challenging to be on a team with Jack Hughes, especially if, like the projected No. 1 pick in the 2019 NHL Draft, you play center.
But Trevor Zegras of USA Hockey's National Team Development Program under-18 team doesn't view being labeled No. 2 behind Hughes as a problem. In fact, Zegras thrives under the constant comparisons and friendly competition not just with Hughes but among the rest of his highly touted teammates.
"The mentality you have going into practice knowing that you are competing and playing against the best guys, the ones that you're going to go up against at the next level is just awesome," said Zegras, an A-rated skater in NHL Central Scouting's December Players to Watch list and projected first-round pick in the 2019 draft.
"We're the closest team ever. Everyone's pulling for another, so I don't think there's so much jealousy as there is happiness for one another when we're playing well. Everyone's pulling for each other because you know you'll get your chance."
Zegras is second to Hughes on the U-18 team in points with 49, to Hughes' 56, and Zegars' 36 assists are second to Hughes' 43. Zegras and Hughes are tied for third with 13 goals.