BOSTON - Three days in June. For the Bruins 2019 1st round selection, John Beecher, that is all the time he had to make a strong first impression on the entirety of the Bruins brass.
The development camp, consisting of two days of practice and a scrimmage on the third day, is an opportunity for each Bruins prospect to prove himself against the organizaitons brightest up and comers. When Bruins Director of Player Development, Jamie Langenbrunner, was asked who stood out to him in the intrasquad tilt on the third day, Beecher's name quickly followed.
"Skating, I think John Beecher's skating also stood out," said Langenbrunner. "It's pretty effortless. It looked like he was gliding going by guys which was impressive for the youngest kid here."
Video: Langenbrunner recaps Bruins Dev Camp
The 2019 GM of the Year, Don Sweeney, echoed those sentiments.
"His skating just stands out," said Sweeney. "You get into situational stuff, 3v3 or 4v3 that the game requires now for guys, and that comes easy to him at times. So, when you think about putting some details into his game moving forward, get him even stronger and some of the nuances that he is going to have to learn in a smaller-area game. He's pretty effective."
During Friday's scrimmage, Beecher's skating made him a regular threat and he notched a goal for team Black. Following the skate, the 18-year-old looked back positively on his first Development Camp experience.
"It was a lot of fun," said Beecher. "I really enjoyed the couple of days I was here and getting to meet a couple of the guys and it just kind of goes to show that you have to show up ready to play every day. Obviously, you see the amount of talent that's here and you have to make sure that you're working and trying to get better because there's always a guy that's working and trying to fight for a spot. It just kind of showed me that there is a lot of talent out there and it's a job so you're fighting for spots and just have to come ready to play every day."
The 6-foot-3 center noted a few things he learned in his time in Boston.
"The down low play and things like that just to help my offense a little bit," said Beecher. "Obviously, everybody always tells you, you have less time and space with the puck when you get to the higher level. Once you get up there it's pretty obvious, so I think that's the biggest thing for me."
Video: Bruins 2019 1st round pick Beecher talks dev camp
Beecher will have a bit of rest before heading to World Juniors camp at the end of July to try and qualify for the US team that will compete in the next U20 World Juniors tournament.
"I'm going to head home for a little bit right now," said Beecher. "Kind of unwind a little bit, get to spend some time with my family. We really haven't had too much time off so it will be nice. And then I got invited to World Junior camp so I will be out in Michigan at the end of July and then right into August, so we will be out there for about a week, week and a half and then go back home and get ready to take off for school."
The opportunity to represent his country on one of the biggest international stages has always been a goal for Beecher.
"Getting to represent your country is something I love doing," said Beecher. "No matter what platform it's on, I'd be honored. I've grown up watching the World Juniors. It's an honor. It'd be awesome."
Following the July camp, Beecher will turn his attention to his first season of college hockey at the University of Michigan, where he could have an opportunity to play top minutes.
"All indication is he is going to be in the top-six," said Langenbrunner. "Obviously with [Josh] Norris leaving for Ottawa, that opens up a center spot and another one they weren't anticipating. So, there will be similar to what Freddy [Trent Frederic] went he went in through the program when he went to Wisconsin, thrown into one of those roles and to a big man situation in the same league.
"Obviously, [Michigan] has done a good job of developing players. He's obviously a big boy, but he is still definitely not developed, which is exciting for us. He is still a little bit skinny and 6'4" 210ish, so I mean that there is still a lot of room for growth left for that player and he is going to a good spot to get it."
After the thrill of being drafted, Beecher is looking to keep his focus on his development.
"It's a little different just kind of knowing that I'm technically part of this organization but at the same time I'll be heading off to Michigan," said Beecher. "So it will always be in the back of my head but at the same time I just kind of take it steps by step and focus on Michigan next year and just do everything I can to get better and grow as a player and as a person."