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DeBrusk Blog Day 4: Youth Hockey

by Jake DeBrusk / Boston Bruins

Bruins prospect Jake DeBrusk is attending his first professional development camp after being selected by the Black & Gold in the first round (14th overall) of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.

DeBrusk is excited to develop his game and share his experiences in a daily blog during his week at Bruins Development Camp.

The Edmonton, AB, CAN native is a left shot forward who played his previous two seasons in the WHL for the Swift Current Broncos. The 6'0'', 174-pound forward led his team this past season with 42 goals (good for sixth overall in the WHL), adding 39 assists for 81 points in 72 games.

DeBrusk’s father, Louie, played 401 NHL games with Edmonton, Tampa Bay, Phoenix and Chicago in a 12-year career from 1991-2003 - and, ironically, was coached by Claude Julien with the Hamilton Bulldogs in 2001-02.

DeBrusk Blog Day 4: Youth Hockey

My earliest hockey moment was when I was three days old. I honestly don’t remember it, but I’ve heard the story enough to feel like I do. I was there to watch my dad play and he scored a goal that night, which was something that didn’t happen very often. They took me to the locker room after the game and it was a very special night.

I grew up rooting for my hometown team, the Edmonton Oilers. My favorite players were always the best and most talented ones: Joe Sakic, Wayne Gretzky, Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin - they are just incredibly fun to watch and I’ve always admired their game.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve been asked about whom I try to model my game after. The player that comes to mind the most is Marian Hossa from Chicago. I just really like the way he plays his two-way game. He's a very powerful player - he’ll steal pucks, have a highlight reel defensive play, but he’ll also have two goals and an assists. I think he’s the a model pro and he’s won a couple Stanley Cups. I’ve been following his career for a while and he’s somebody that I would compare myself to.

My strongest memories from my younger youth hockey days are all the friendships I made with my teammates. Being the part of a team is a unique experience and playing the sport that we all love is the best thing when you’re growing up. One of my most memorable hockey moments I can remember so far came in Midgets during the playoffs in a game that went to a fifth overtime - and in that fifth overtime I scored the game-winner. I’ll never forget that moment. It was eight periods of hockey and it was sudden death elimination. They were one of our biggest rivals back then. We finished as the number one seed and they were the chirpy, trash talking Cinderella story. Naturally, there was a lot on the line.

I was in the high slot and one of my teammates, Riley Simpson, came around the net and he tried to wrap it around but just missed. The puck bounced right out to the slot and I was the late guy into the zone because I was coming off the bench. There was only one defenseman to beat so I faked the shot and he went right down. I went around him, made a quick move and shot for the opening on the low blocker side - and sure enough, I found the back of the net. There was a big celebration afterward. I went around the net and somehow made it back to our own goalie.

Those are memories that I’ll never forget and have built the foundation for who I am today.

But now I’m moving forward in my hockey career and have my focus on one day wearing the Spoked-B in Boston.

--As told to Zach Guerette

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