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Ray Bourque's son Ryan selected by Rangers

Saturday, 06.27.2009 / 1:48 PM / 2009 NHL Entry Draft

By Shawn P. Roarke - NHL.com Senior Managing Editor

MONTREAL -- It's a safe bet Ryan Bourque enjoyed his draft experience a little more than the one his dad -- Hall of Famer Ray Bourque -- went through 30 years ago.

Still, Ryan Bourque, a 5-foot-8 forward with the United States National Team Development Program, had to wait in the Bell Centre stands for two days and 79 picks before the New York Rangers selected him in the third round. But none of that mattered once he heard his name called and accepted congratulations from family and friends before marching down to the arena floor to meet his new NHL team.

"I knew I was on their radar, but to be a part of that franchise is truly an honor," Ryan Bourque told NHL.com. "I'm real excited to get things going."

Ray Bourque played the majority of his legendary career with the Boston Bruins before moving to Colorado to win the ever-elusive Stanley Cup in 2001. So it is a little surprising that Ryan Bourque was immediately ready to embrace another Original Six franchise.

"I was always a Bruins fan, but going into the Draft, the Rangers were one of the top three teams I would have liked to go to," Ryan Bourque said. "To get the experience of being drafted by them is awesome."

It was a far different experience than the one Ray Bourque experienced when he was drafted by the Bruins at No. 8 in 1979. Ray Bourque was informed of his selection by phone, minutes after he had left the ice at a summer hockey school where he was teaching young players how to skate.

"As a player (for me), it was way back in '79 and we didn't have anything like this," Ray Bourque said. "It was the year of the merger (with the World Hockey Association) and I was coming out of teaching hockey school and I got a call saying I was going to the Bruins. It was nothing like this, where you are just waiting to hear.

The waiting was hard on the Bourque family, even though they had already been through the drill once before. Chris Bourque, Ryan's older brother, was taken by the Washington Capitals in the second round of the 2004 Entry Draft.

Bourque's sons could lean on the lessons of dealing with pressure that their dad learned from a 23-year career in the NHL.

"As a dad, having been through so much in the NHL for 23 years, you just kind of sit back and wait and you know it is going to happen," he said. "When it did, I was very happy to see the Rangers step up and pick Ryan."

Ray tried to impress on Ryan that patience would be his more important ally as the draft unfolded.

"I told him just be patient," he said. "You hear a lot of stuff about rankings and everything, but you don't want to paint yourself in a certain spot because you could be disappointed or you could be surprised. You just have to be patient and wait for your name.

"It doesn't matter where you go. Once you go on the ice and show your stuff regardless if you a first-rounder or a sixth rounder, you still have to prove yourself and if you prove yourself, you'll get an opportunity to play in the NHL someday."

That's just what Ryan Bourque plans to do. He will take his high-energy, max-effort style -- one that saw him net 48 points in 46 games with the USNTDP -- and apply it in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, where he will play for the Quebec Remparts, a team run by Patrick Roy, a teammate of his father's with the Avalanche.

Down the road, Ryan hopes it will translate into a spot with the Rangers, beginning a NHL journey already traveled by both his father and his brother.