BostonBruins.com - To be drafted by the Boston Bruins, or any team for that matter, is an experience like no other for an 18-year-old. For Linus Arnesson, that dream came true on June 30, 2013.
“The Boston Bruins select Linus Arnesson” is what rang out to the crowd that filled the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. This was the Bruins’ second round pick, 60th overall. For Arnesson, when he heard his name, he was nervous but excited.
“First of all, I was really happy. It’s a dream come true, especially in Boston,” Arnesson said through a smile, in Boston for the first time from Sweden for the club's development camp in July.
Being an Original Six team laced in Black & Gold, Linus was even more thrilled to come to such a city, even if it is a long way from his home in Hanviken. Though, he admitted most of what he knew of Boston came from his local O'Learys restaurant, The Town and Good Will Hunting.
No matter what country he or the other prospects in the B's system are from, they all learn in their development what it takes to be a Boston Bruins just the same.
Arnesson watched the playoffs and he saw Patrice Bergeron stopping at nothing to help his team; he knows how tough those in the spoke-B can be.
"I think that suits me very well, because I like to play tough," said Arnesson, who characterized Boston as like a "machine" team.
"I think I try to see myself as a two-way defenseman; trying to develop my offensive game," he added.
"I don't lay out too many open-ice hits but in the corners, I play tough there. That's my game."
He had a great role model - and future Hall of Famer - growing up to look up to, as well - Niklas Lidstrom.
"Of course, he's a great guy outside of the ice too and that's a great example for younger players," said Arnesson.
The blueliner has spent most of his junior level career with Djurgarden in Sweden, and will be returning there for 2013-14. Last season, he split time between their junior and their men's squad in Sweden's second division.
Arnesson earned an assist and racked up eight penalty minutes in 31 games with the men's team. He notched one goal, three assists and 22 penalty minutes in 13 appearances with the junior team.
He hopes to soon play in North America, and his development focus is on building more muscle mass in order to be ready for North American hockey.
The North American rink size will also be an adjustment, but the blueliner doesn’t foresee this being a problem.
“There are smaller rinks, it goes faster and there are probably more tough plays here,” said Arnesson. “But I have played on Canadian and North American ice many times.”
Regardless of the ice size, though, the 6-foot-1, 188-pound D-man is looking to bring his tough game when it's time.
“My game is to play tough and I play a good defensive game first, and then take the offensive," said Arnesson. “But I also use my quickness and my speed.”
The 18-year-old has a lot in store for himself, but won't be rushing his development as looks to someday wear the spoked-B in Boston.
---Written by Jenna Gilberti for BostonBruins.com
(Caryn Switaj contributed to this report)