By Joel Wittnebel/The Oshawa Express
It’s a play that takes a little bit of timing, lots of skill and a bucket-load of luck.
Hockey fans have seen it countless times. The player breaks out of the penalty box at the exact second the puck comes sliding into the neutral zone, leaving them to scoop it up and take off on a breakaway.
Well, when the pieces came together for Oshawa General’s rookie Domenic Commisso on Nov. 29, he finished like a pro, not like a player who has seen less than 30 games of OHL action.
And it wasn’t just the breakaway goal, Commisso, a 17-year-old, Oakville native, who also scored a second marker in that same game, has been a key component in Oshawa’s wins this season, and is the top rookie on the roster with 17 points in 28 games, including a point streak that lasted four games last month.
Generals’ head coach Bob Jones has called Commisso’s play exceptional for someone coming into their rookie season in the OHL.
“For a ‘98 guy that’s never played in the league, he’s making great strides forward and obviously his offensive flare talks for itself,” Jones said.
Commisso, who has seen time on the power play, three-on-three overtime and shootout attempts, is grateful for the opportunities he’s getting with the Gens.
“Bob’s been great to me so far. Throughout the year, he’s been giving me so much opportunity and I can’t be thankful enough for that,” he said.
After a big season in 2013/2014 with the Don Mills Flyers minor midget AAA team which saw him garner 33 points in 31 games, Commisso moved up to the Mississauga Chargers of the Ontario Junior Hockey League after being drafted in the fifth round by Oshawa of the 2014 Priority Selection.
With the Chargers last season, Commisso managed 11 goals and 14 assists for 25 points in 43 games with the team. He was also brought up for a game with Oshawa, but didn’t see any more action after that.
Now, he’s playing on a line with team captain and New York Islanders prospect Michael Dal Colle.
The pair have a combined 40 points so far this season.
“Mike’s one of the best players in the league so any time you are beside him he makes everyone around him better. So, I’m just lucky enough to be on his line,” Commisso says.
For a 5’9”, 183-pound centreman, the adjustment into the OHL with bigger and stronger players can be tough, but Commisso’s speed is becoming his biggest asset on the ice.
“I’ve been adjusting and every game is getting better,” he said. “I just keep trying to work hard and do my things right and help the team the best way I can.”