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Alexander Wennberg media transcript

by Staff / Columbus Blue Jackets

NEWARK, NJ -- Alexander Wennberg met with the media after the Blue Jackets selected him in the first round with the 14th overall pick. The following is a transcription of the media scrum at Prudential Center.

“You were selected earlier than expected, were you surprised?”

AW: “I talked to the team a lot and and they said if it comes and I’m still left at 14 then I’d get picked. I think it’s a great organization and it’s a great opportunity for me with the team.”

Q: “How many times did you talk to Columbus? Did you know this was coming?”

AW: “I talked to the Swedish scout out there and at the combine. So I had a lot of talks with them. We had good talks. I felt like it was a great team for me and like I said I’m very satisfied right now.”

When asked about his new team:

AW: “I think they are moving up, they had a great season last year and a lot of good players coming up so I think its great for me to come in there and show I’m a great player and I want to play on their team. So it’s a great opportunity.”

Q: “Did they make you any promises?”

AW: “Not any promises. They talked to me and said they were interested and you never know what’s going to happen at the draft so I just had to wait and see. Right now it’s a great feeling being here.”

On his plans moving forward:

AW: “The plan is to stay in Sweden one more year and maybe gain some more weight and get stronger, and improve my skill. If I’m going to be ready for the NHL I think you need to improve everything because it’s such a great league. After this year, I’ll just wait and see what’s going to happen.”

Q: “Can you talk about some of your international play?”

AW: “With the National team it’s always fun to play those tournaments and play those guys. I guess I did a tournament there and it was a great experience and it’s always nice to play against other prospects. Obviously it was nice to play on the national team as well.”

Q: “With that Swedish team, there were a lot of injuries right before the tournament and it looked like there were some young guys that got more of a shot. Was there a sense in the dressing room that you guys could band together and do something special?”

AW: “All the guys had to take more responsibility, especially younger guys. I think the team stuck together and worked for each other and I think that’s why we played such good hockey.”

When asked if he would prefer to be in a busy city:

AW: “Of course New York is a great city. Right now I’m not going for the greatest town I don’t want to play on the best team. I think Columbus is on their way up and I think in a couple years it could be a Stanley Cup team and I think that’s is greater than being in a town that’s better.”

Q: “How did it help playing against men back home in Sweden this year for your development?”

AW: “I think that helped me a lot because it is different hockey between there and junior in Sweden. It’s a big step and I think that really helped me develop my game and I think I improved my skill because it was a different kind of hockey. I think this year was a great year for me and I’m looking forward to maybe taking more steps next year.”

Q: “What do you think you do best on the ice?”

AW: “I’m a smart player on the ice. I have a good hockey sense. I think that’s my greatest skill and something I want to always lean back on because I always try to be in the right position and read the game before it happens.”

When asked about GM Jarmo Kekalainen:

AW: “We don’t talk as much with the GM but I heard he is a great GM and I am looking forward to getting to know him better and see what he has planned for me.”

Q: “You’re a center, right?”

AW: “I am a center but I can play wing as well but I am more comfortable as a center.”

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