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Running quotes from the 2013 NHL Entry Draft on 6/30

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
BOSTON BRUINS 2013 NHL DRAFT QUOTES

DRAFT QUOTES
Sunday, June 30, 2013

BOSTON BRUINS PROSPECT DEFENSEMAN LINUS ARNESSON
On if he thought the Bruins would be in the mix to pick him…
I think I had a very good meeting with them at the combine and I got a really good feeling of the Bruins too. And I’m very happy right now to be selected by them.

On how he would describe his game…
I consider myself a two way defenseman.  I try to play to my defensive.  I try to be a complete two-way defenseman with like tough play and just be tough on the ice. That’s how I play.

On his past year went playing with the men’s team and the junior team…
I think the men’s team I had a very much national team collection this year. So I think I played very simple for the men’s team to get the invite. I just played more and more. For the juniors I played a big role and had many power plays…So I think I can make myself small time ice and lots of ice time by the end. I’m happy with my season.

On why he thought he had a positive meeting with the Bruins…
I think we came out of it with the same idea of what a player I was. They mentioned me to be a good player in their organization. I like to play hard. Ever since, they had a good idea of what player I was. That was good and a reason I think it went well.

On what defenseman he plays like…
Probably like Niklas Hjalmarsson in Chicago. He has upside on his offensive side. He plays very tough, so I think him.

On his plans for next year if he is going to stay in Sweden…
Yeah one more year for Djurgarden in Sweden. I’m going to play that and hopefully I’m ready to take a step forward to North America.

On if he thinks he can still build more muscle…
No, not more height. I’m 187 [pounds]. I think I’m going to stay at that but definitely some more muscle, muscle mass this summer. I’m trying to gain some pounds to be as good as possible for North American hockey.

On what he knows about the Bruins…
Yeah, sure I watched them. I think they are a very tough team. I’m really happy to be a part of the Bruins right now.

BOSTON BRUINS PROSPECT FORWARD PETER CEHLARIK
On his thoughts on being selected by the Bruins…
It’s an amazing feeling. Before this season, I didn't even expect to get to be drafted and even if it's the Bruins. It’s great for me. I appreciate. It’s just motivation to work harder and do great.

On what he knows about the Bruins…
I’ve been watching some games. I know the style they play, they play physical, they have strong guys, strong team. I like they way they play, and it’s one of the teams I’ve been watching the most.

On how he would describe himself as a player…
Trying to read the game good and get…. to make a play for the mates and work hard for the team and win every battle.

On how he ended up in Sweden…
Two years ago when I got to my agent … He care about me. He took me to Sweden for tryouts. It was a long week, and then they take me for playing in junior league. And this season was just amazing for me to get chance to play in the elite league with the men’s team, It’s been great

On what kinds of things he’s been working on to improve…
I want to get faster on the ice and get stronger. Want to start to play more physical and work on these things.

On players in the NHL he models his game after…
I think maybe Rick Nash. I’ve been watching a lot of young guys, but I like the way that Nash plays.

On what Nash does…
A guy who can score and who can be strong on the puck.

On playing with Zdeno Chara…
It’s very exciting for me. He’s a great person and a great player, of course, and he’s been working hard for that and I mean it’s amazing

On his hockey background…
I started to play a lot of sports. My dad taught me many sports, but I decided to play hockey. Maybe that's because he played hockey until the juniors when he quit. But I’ve been always around the sport and outside with the guys and playing some games, and I end up with the hockey.

BOSTON BRUINS PROSPECT FORWARD RYAN FITZGERALD
On the long wait but a good pay off at the end…
Definitely. To get my name called, it’s definitely something special.

On being picked by the Bruins and being a fan of them…
Yeah, definitely. Just ups and downs about being a Boston fan this year and being a part of that and being that same part of that organization it’s a dream so…

On attending Boston College to play hockey with Bruins fans watching his progress…
Yeah, it’s a win-win for me. It’s one of the greatest schools in the country and that’s why I picked it. They have a very good winning tradition there and to be able play for Jerry York is going to be big for me.

On if he is playing there this year…
This year.

On his family’s ties to the NHL…
Yeah, definitely seeing what they’ve done and being able to carry the torch here is definitely something big. They might have a little upper leg on me right now but hopefully I can catch up on them.

On what he brings to the Bruins…
I think I’m a very smart player who makes a lot of good plays and makes a lot of kids around him better.  I play at two areas of the ice. Good utility guy who you can toss out there whenever you need something done.

On his friends texting him…
I can feel it right now going off. I’m trying to keep that to the side for now and kind of check up on that later.

On if his father gave him any hints where the Penguins were going to go…
He kind of kept that to himself. He was on the fence about whether keeping me informed or not. He kind of sat back and was just a dad throughout this whole process so it was good.

On his dad playing for the Bruins and his experience with them…
Yeah, definitely. The time I was here I was running around the locker room. It’s weird to think I am a part of this organization now. It still really hasn’t hit me fully. It’s a great feeling.

On his friendship with Matt Grzelcyk and playing with him in development camp…
I mean he’s one of my best friends like you were playing with them. When I’ve been talking to him throughout this whole process and just what to expect. To be on the same organization is something huge.

On taking the ice against him in Boston College/Boston University games…
Yeah, we are not friends any more when the puck drops.

BOSTON BRUINS PROSPECT DEFENSEMAN WILEY SHERMAN
On his season at Hotchkiss and how it helped his development…
Sure. I started off at Hotchkiss. I started off the season in early November. I went through February. So it’s a pretty short season. We are a very young team. We started off all right but then we pretty much struggled the rest of the season. We set a record low for our final record at 16 and 21. I think kids persevered. It was a great learning experience for all the young kids on the team. It was really going out every shift there’s nothing to lose so kids took bigger risks, made better plays than they previously would have.

On his game…
Yeah, I’m just a big, kind of stay at home defender. I’ve got a big reach so it’s harder for kids to get around me. I just try to keep things simple and play my defensive game.

On how he skates well for his size…
Yeah, I’d like to think so.

On where he is from and if he is a New England native…
I am. I am from Greenwich, Connecticut.  I’ve been there all my life.

On being picked for a team that is in New England…
Yeah, it’s really special. I go to a school where half the kids in my dorm are big time Bruins fans. I’m sure they are pretty happy too. I’ve watched Bruins games all year just because of them.

On if he is familiar with the Bruins’ style of play and if he could fit into that system…
I hope so a few years down the road. I mean still a long way to go but I just hope so.

On his plans for the fall if he is going to Harvard…
I’m actually going back to Hotchkiss for my senior year and in the fall of 2014 I will be at Harvard.

On if he met with the Bruins…
I did, yes. About three weeks ago, I took the train up to Boston. I spent the day there, did a little bit of testing, and then went out to dinner with Mr. Sweeney.

On if they talked about his plans next year…
Yep. As far as I’m concerned, yep.

On his plans after Hotchkiss…
That really hasn’t been discussed yet so I’m not too sure.

On players he admired growing up…
When I was younger, I used to be a Devils fan. When I was really young, I loved watching Scott Stevens just because he was probably the biggest hitter on the ice. Lately, I’ve been watching a lot of Rangers games. I’d have to say Dan Girardi. He’s a big player who I try to model my game after.

On what he is still working on in his game…
I’m definitely trying to work on pretty much my gap control, stepping up on the player and following it up the ice as fast as I can.

On what made him pick Harvard…
They were one of the first few schools in the mix for me. They expressed a lot of interest. The moment I got up there I fell in love with the campus. The coaching staff, they were great to me. It was pretty much a no-brainer from the start.

On if he knew John Hader growing up…
I did. I played on his team at the Greenwich skating club probably eight years ago. I played golf with him about two weeks ago. So yeah we know each other pretty well.

On what he will work on senior year…
Well, my senior season I’m just going to try and work on producing points. We don’t have many goal scorers on our team so I’m definitely going to have to take a leadership role in that.

BOSTON BRUINS ASSISTANT GENERAL MANAGER JIM BENNING, DIRECTOR OF AMATEUR SCOUTING WAYNE SMITH AND HEAD EUROPEAN SCOUT JUKKA HOLTARI

On the draft picks from Europe…
Wayne Smith: We try and take the best player we can take every year, and this year, more Europeans than usual.

On the talent pool in Bruins' draft class...
Wayne Smith: I think they are a great group of guys. We were really excited about getting our first pick Linus Arnesson. I think that we had envisioned that we weren’t going to be able to get him so any time you can get a player who played in the World Junior tournament as an underage player, we get excited about those types of players.

On Linus Arnesson…
Wayne Smith: He’s a steady defenseman, takes away ice, very difficult to take one on one, responsible, sticks up for his teammates. He plays a good puck moving game and has size to go with it.

On Anton Blidh and Mitchell Dempsey…
Wayne Smith: Blidh plays a Bruins style of play. He is an up and down, hard-nosed kid. He had eighty-nine penalty minutes to go along with seventeen goals in the Swedish League. Mitchell Dempsey is a big strong kid who had injury problems, high ankle sprain and pneumonia this year, unfortunately. We were very familiar with him and we took a chance that he’s going to have a comeback season this year. Having seen him - the player play, myself, in midget and earlier, I am really excited about the possibilities that he has. He was a first round pick in the Ontario Hockey League and he’s a big, strong kid. I think he’s going to do everything to try and make this hockey team.

On drafting Ryan Fitzgerald…
Jim Benning: Yeah, in the fourth round we were really excited to get Ryan [Fitzgerald]. He’s a real smart hockey player. He plays hard. He competes hard. He’ll fit right into our culture, our competitiveness. I think he’s going to be a real good player for us.

On Wiley Sherman and the quality of the New England players this year…
Jim Benning: Wiley Sherman, we drafted him because he is six foot six. He’s a raw player right now but he’s athletic. He’s a good skater, he can make a good first pass. We're hoping he develops into a defensive, stay at home D-man [defenseman], make a good first pass, play physical. If he hits his high side, we are hoping he can kind of play like a Hal Gill style of game.

On the New England players…
Jim Benning: Yeah, we thought the New England kids were very good this year. We had our sights even on a couple other of the kids but they ended up going to other teams. So it was a good crop for New England this year.

On if going into the draft there was anything they wanted to accomplish or build depth anywhere…
Jim Benning: Well, what we tried to do is take the best player available when we picked. We sat here for four and a half hours before we got our first pick at the end of the second round. So we were excited when Arnesson was still there on the table for us. So we think, like Smitty [Wayne Smith] said, he’s a great skater. Keeps tight gaps. He fits into system of game that we play. We were excited to get him at the end of the second round. 



On why they chose Arnesson…
Jukka Holtari: We had good follow-up on Arnesson, and every time we see him, he plays a steady game. Excellent defensive skills, smart, anticipates play well. Pretty much one of those guys that you like the more you see him. And if he turns out the player we wish him to be, it’s going to be the style of, I would say, [Andrew] Ference or [Dennis] Seidenberg. One of those guys you appreciate more after seeing more

.

On Peter Cehlarik…
Jukka Holtari: Smart, skilled, well-sized. Young Slovak guy who has played two years in Sweden in Lulea [Lulea HF] programs. Little bit of a secret player early in the season late in the season. Earlier in the season, he played very well in Sochi in the Under-18 World Championship for the Slovaks and no more anything about a secret player then. And if he turns out what we wish him to be, the style of play reminds a little bit of Anze Kopitar. Kopitar was ahead of this player - already at this age, he played at the Men’s World Championship. But the style of play has some similarities.

On the high quality of the Swedish League players this year…
Jukka Holtari: We were happy with what we were able to find in the spots that we got to pick. So we feel very good right after the draft.

On summarizing their draft class…
Jim Benning: I think we ended up drafting a couple defensemen that fit the system that we play. And then the forwards, we added some speed, some skill in the forward group. So, we  kind of added a little bit of everything.
Wayne Smith: I think we were able to stick to our policy of having Bruin' style players; people who are committed to winning and committed to the team game. And I’m confident everyone one of those players will do everything they can to try and bring the Cup to Boston. I know that they are excited about it.

On the Fitzgerald’s connection with the scouting staff…
Wayne Smith: Yeah well, he stands for himself, but I know his father played in the National League and his uncle is one of our top scouts [Scott Fitzgerald]. But Ryan Fitz [Fitzgerald] is a man of himself and he’s a winner and I look for him to be a Bruin some point. I don’t think there’s anything that is going to hold him back. And I know that he is going to die trying and there is nothing that he loves more than this city, this hockey season, so it’s an exciting pick for us all.

On Mitchell Dempsey…
Wayne Smith: He had a bit of an offseason as far as he was injured for most of the season with a high ankle sprain and he a bout of pneumonia. But we are very familiar with this player, I’ve seen him since he was 14-years-old. He was a first round pick in the Ontario Hockey League, he is a big strong kid that has a great shot and our belief is that he is going to have a rebound season this year and we’re going to be very proud of him. So we look forward to having him in development camp.
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