Your father and uncle were both collegiate goalies, what made you want to stray off and become a forward?
I never thought it was interesting growing up. I always liked the guys that could celebrate and score goals. But it never really interested me that much, so it was a pretty easy decision.
Did they give you any good advice that contributed to your offensive game?
No, not really. My little brother is trying to be a goalie right now, and I’m trying to steer him away from that, so it should be interesting.
You were drafted by the Kitchener Rangers, did you give the OHL any consideration?
When I got offered to play here it was kinda a no brainer. Any time you get to pull over the USA sweater and play for your country, it was a pretty easy decision, so not really.
Do you have to change your game style when competing in NCAA games vs USHL games?
You definitely have to be harder on pucks and tracking pucks and stuff like that. Obviously the maturity wise in College, those guys are 22, 23, 24, 25 years old, and the USHL the oldest you can be is 20, so you’re definitely playing against men and changes the factor a bit.
You broke the NTDP record for career assists, what makes your playmaking game so strong?
Its really testament to the guys I play with here. I mean they’re great guys. We have a lot of chemistry, the guys that I’ve played with the last two years and everyone on my team. So I definitely wouldn’t be able to do that without them.
Has there been a player that stands out to you chemistry wise?
Yeah, I’ve played with Colin White that last 2 years really together and he’s been a big part of me breaking that assist record. We have a pretty cool relationship together, we’re going to College together next year, so it should be fun.
Was that one of the reasons you chose Boston College, and what were some of the other reasons?
Yeah, that was definitely one of the reasons. And obviously the track record for winning there is impeccable so it was a pretty easy decision that way.
How has the NTDP developed your game?
The Developmental program really helps you with everything. You need to learn how to balance school, time and obviously playing hockey, which is what you’re here for. You really learn how to grow up and become a man that way, so its a cool experience.
You’re listed as 5’9, how does this affect your style and game?
Obviously night in and night out, you have to prove to every person in the building and every team you play against that you can be an elite player even at that height and weight, so consistency is huge for me through out this year and my career.
What sets you apart from the other draft eligible players?
I think the way I think the game and my ability to make plays and my high hockey IQ are the biggest things that separate me from other players in the draft, and I think it will help me as I go along in my career.
What has been the greatest accomplishment in hockey?
Definitely winning the U17 World Challenge last year, with the 22 guys we played with last year, it was a great experience and pretty much ran the table on everyone. It was a cool thing to do at the program.
How was the World Juniors try out experience for you?
It was great, obviously nobody likes getting cut but it was an unbelievable experience and I took a lot from my roommate J.T. Compher. I took a lot of positives and hopefully I can help my team to U18 in Apri
If you were a scout, what would you say you need to improve on?
I think my first 3 steps can be quicker and just my speed all around is definitely what I’m trying to work on.