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Benning Hard at Work

by Joe Gallagher / Boston Bruins

WILMINGTON, MA – One of the Bruins newest draft selections, Matt Benning, has been hard at work during the Bruins 2012 Development Camp here at Ristuccia Arena in Wilmington.

“I think it’s a good set up here,” Benning said of his first impressions here at development camp. "They've got a good organization and a good facility."

But Benning acknowledged how his approach doesn’t change no-matter the atmosphere.

“No, I mean every day I do the same thing to get ready for hockey,” he said. "It’s just a bigger step for me."

The next step is always big, even for someone with six-feet and 218-pounds at his disposal and for Benning getting some more speed into those steps was something he wanted to work on.

“In terms of where I want to be I need to be better, I need to come into [development camp] in better shape,” Benning said. "Obviously, everyone has stuff to work on obviously, but I think I need to work on my skating."

Thankfully, skating has been an important aspect of focus for the B's personnel running the ice at camp and the ice at Ristuccia was torn up after a heavy session of power skating on Friday.

However, on top of the conditioning and skating work, Benning mentioned how just being around players here at the next level will help him improve.

“I mean all the players here are faster than what I played with this year so I think that will definitely help my foot speed and hopefully make me get better,” Benning said.

B's Assistant General Manager Jim Benning, Matt's uncle, mentioned the aspects of Benning’s game that can make him a great fit for the organization.

“He has good poise with the puck, head up, so he makes good plays up to the forwards coming out his own end," said the elder Benning at last week's NHL Entry Draft. "He’s physically strong.

"He likes to play the physical game and take away time and space from the forwards from the other teams.”

When asked about his style of play, the 18-year-old allowed that his game may be reminiscent of Andrew Ference's game, but also admitted he needs to work to improve to get to the NHL.

That said, Jim Benning emphasized the high hopes for the blueliner as he continues to blossom as a player and improve his skating game.

“We feel there’s some qualities there, once he does develop, that fit the way we play,” he said.

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