Skating in the wake of the Golden Jet hasn't been much of a problem for young Brett Hull, who hopes to propel the University of Minnesota-Duluth into the NCAA hockey tournament in his freshman year.
Hull, son of NHL great Bobby Hull, started slowly with the Bulldogs, scoring four goals by the midway point of the season.
"I'm a fairly stable guy but for a while I was shaken, like I was out of my league," Hull said. "It's not so much that I was making glaring mistakes, but the little fundamental mistakes. I was tentative, scared and was hanging back."
Duluth coach Mike Sertich and Hull knew the freshman had not inherited all of his father's talents.
"His defense and his skating were the things he said needed work. He told me that's why he came here," Sertich said. "He's made a total commitment and he's a good example of what hard work can do."
Entering this weekend's Western Collegiate Hockey Association championship series against the University of Minnesota, he has 30 goals and 26 assists. The goal total ties a school record for most by a freshman in one season.
Although Hull says isn't the "greatest skater," he has inherited his father's instincts.
"A lot of it has come naturally. The smarts of the game has come to me naturally," he said Wednesday.
Six of his goals came in a two-game series at Wisconsin when he scored back-to-back hat tricks in leading Duluth to 5-4 and 8-1 victories.
"I love it. I couldn't ask for anything more in my first year," said Hull, who was drafted by Calgary in last June's NHL draft. "It's always great to be on a successful team."
The Bulldogs are hoping to repeat as the league and playoff champions, and improve on last year's runner-up finish in the NCAA finals, where they lost 5-4 to Bowling Green in four overtimes.