When it comes to defenseman, there are three types of players - those that get noticed for the right reasons, like providing offense; those that get noticed for the wrong reasons, like having their pocket picked; and those that go unnoticed because they are so stealth in their role as a shutdown defender. Seth Helgeson is the latter and it's something he's quite proud of.
"The type of game that I play, going unnoticed is a great thing," said the 6'4, 215 pound Minnesota native. "I keep things simple. I'm pretty physical and try to use my size to my advantage at all times. It's pretty straight forward and not too flashy and I'm ok with that."
Throughout his nine-year career with the Sioux City Musketeers of the USHL and the Minnesota Golden Gophers, and now in his fourth season with the Devils organization, Helgeson hasn't earned more than 16 points in any season. Clearly, his value is found in the strength of his defensive game, but he's always working on the effectiveness of his first pass and ability to get the puck out of the defensive zone and join the rush.
"There are always things to work on, even if it's just fine tuning something," explained Helgeson. "The best thing about Hynesy is that he's so detailed and organized that we're always practicing to get better. We might only focus on one or two parts of our game at any particular practice, but all the drills have a purpose. Every practice is for a reason and helps us get better and it's my job to do what he wants as best as I can."
Having spent his first year as a professional in Albany and the past two years getting to know I-87 rather well bouncing back and forth between the AHL and NHL, Helgeson, who is on a one-way deal in the final year of his contract and would have to clear waivers to go Albany, is looking to not only make the opening night roster, but call Jersey home for the next nine months.
"I want to be an everyday NHL player and stick with the team," he said. "The past few years, I've been up and down and I just want to make that next step in my career and be here and help the team win and make the playoffs."
…and go unnoticed.
"That's right. When I go unnoticed, that's when I'm at my best," he said with a smile.
Seth joined me on Facebook live earlier this afternoon so if you want to learn the team he followed the most while growing up, his music preferences and what he'd be eating if he wasn't a professional athlete, be sure to check it out!
The team will skate tomorrow morning and then load up the bus for a trip to West Point and a 7 p.m. date with the Florida Panthers at Tate Rink, home of the Army Black Knights.