Boston Bruins prospect Ryan Button
, a defenseman currently in his fourth season with junior hockey’s Prince Albert Raiders, is employing many of the things he learned during his time training with the B’s to establish himself as a leader on his junior team.
As a veteran blueliner in the WHL, Button employs the highest level of dedication every time he steps onto the ice.
“I’ve tried to take that back to my club team and show guys that every day is a work day at the next level and they come to work every day where you can’t take any days off,” referencing lessons he took from his two training and development camps in Boston.
He cited his observations of Bruins vets Zdeno Chara
, Mark Recchi, and Tim Thomas
while they prepared for the regular season.
“All those guys, just watching how they prepare even if it’s just an ordinary practice, they still prepare and warm up like it’s a game,” he continued.
The Edmonton native has matured in his game and went into this season with a new attitude toward his role as a leader for the Raiders.
“Last year, as an 18 year old coming back from Bruins camp, I kind of thought that it was all on my shoulders knowing that I was the only guy who had been to an NHL camp,” said Button.
“This year it’s more of just playing my game and doing the simple little things in every game, making sure I’m not getting beaten in my defensive zone and helping the team offensively.
“That seemed to work out a lot better than trying to do it all myself.”
So far this season, Button has posted a 2-16=18 line with 25 penalty minutes in 35 games and is currently his team’s top scoring defenseman.
With a nod toward sticking with the pros next September, Button said he is working hard during the current campaign.
“My defensive game. They talked to me a lot about being a little more active and having my stick on the ice the whole time in the defensive zone, so just a couple little things in the D-zone that I’ve corrected,” he said.