Kevin Montgomery is no stranger to playing in new and unique situations. First, the Rochester, N.Y. native left home at a young age to play at USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program in Ann Arbor, Mich. Next, he began the 2006-07 season at Ohio State University, but played only 17 NCAA contests before leaving to join the Ontario Hockey League’s London Knights. There, he made an immediate impact, finishing third among Knights defensemen in scoring with 17 points (1g/16a) despite playing only half of the season in the OHL.
This week, Montgomery is skating in another unique situation at the Avalanche’s 2007 Rookie Camp.
Q: What are your thoughts so far on your first Rookie Camp?
A: It’s been a good experience so far. There are a lot of good players here, so I’m just trying to do my best and have fun.
Q: You left Ohio State last season to play in the OHL. What were the deciding factors in your decision?
A: I think that the schedule was better for me because you play more games in the OHL. I definitely think that having more on-ice situations helps you to develop as a player. Also, I was able to concentrate more on hockey with London.
Q: For the second consecutive year, you attended USA Hockey’s National Junior Evaluation Camp. Was it any different for you the second time around?
A: I felt a lot more comfortable this year after being there last year, so I think overall it went pretty well. To make the Junior Team, it all depends on how I play the first half of the year, so hopefully that goes well.
Q: What are your goals for the upcoming season?
A: I just want to be the best player I can be, keep it simple, and hopefully help my team win more games. I think we have a really good team coming back, so we’re going to try to go for it all and do the best we can.
Q: What are your thoughts on the Avalanche organization so far?
A: It’s been phenomenal. Every time I come out here they treat you like gold, and it’s a lot of fun. We had testing at the Avalanche rink this week, and it’s a pretty cool place. I’ve been out here twice before. I was here for the development camp in July and also came out for an off-ice workout about a month before.
Q: So what are you hoping to show the coaches this week?
A: Hopefully that I can make smart plays and am able to play at the next level. I just want to go out there and play the best I can.
Q: For those who have never seen you play, how would you describe your style of play?
A: I’d like to think that I’m a two-way defenseman that plays well in my own zone and has the ability to jump up into the play when needed.