I think this is a really special kid, a really special person and a really good player. He's a really hungry kid. He's a mature kid. - John Weisbrod on Kenny Agostino
PITTSBURGH, PA -- One of the attributes that the Calgary Flames organization looks at when scouting prospects is their demeanor and how they represent themselves off the ice.
Will this person will be a good teammate? How dedicated are they to growing as a player, as a professional? Will they be an excellent representative for the team and the city of Calgary?
Kenny Agostino passes all of those tests with flying colours.
"I met with he and his father (at the Frozen Four) which was the first time that I got to meet the kid in person and that experience has made me even more excited," Flames Assistant General Manager John Weisbrod told CalgaryFlames.com. "I think this is a really special kid, a really special person and a really good player. He's a really hungry kid. He's a mature kid.
"I have really high hopes for Kenny."
Weisbrod has watched the winger play for the last few years, going back to when he was a member of the Boston Bruins scouting staff, so when the Flames were negotiating a deal with the Pittsburgh Penguins for former captain Jarome Iginla, he was insistent that the Flanders, NJ product be a part of the package.
"It's absolutely an honour to be a part of that trade and now to be a part of the Flames organization," Agostino said. "As a player, to know a team believes in you like that, it's really exciting. I'm so excited to a part of the organization."
In the 2012-13 season, the 21 year-old was second in team scoring, trailing captain Andrew Miller by a single goal, with 41 points (17 goals, 24 assists) in 37 games and logged a ton of minutes for the Bulldogs in the Frozen Four, playing on Yale's top line on-route to their NCAA Championship victory.
While Weisbrod is impressed with Agostino's offensive prowess, he's more impressed with the dedication the winger shows to all areas of his game. Agostino has worked hard on honing all areas of his game and is responsible in all three zones.
"Obviously on his team he's one of the leading scorers and he's productive offensively but what I think will really help him in being a good pro is that he does a lot of the little things top players in junior or college don't want to do," Weisbrod added.
"He's really strong on the walls, he's good in the neutral zone, he's good in his own end. He's the kind of kid who doesn't take any shortcuts. He plays the game the right way. I think the fact that he's so strong on the puck and he's so good in battles, so good in tight space, cycling down low in the offensive zone and winning 50/50 pucks so to speak, that's his calling card that lends well to his potential as a pro."
Agostino, who is a political science major, will play out his senior year at Yale and will be asked to shoulder more responsibility on the ice with the likes of Miller, Colin Dueck, Josh Balch, Antoine Laganiere, Jeff Malcolm and Nick Maricic graduating this past spring.
"He's already a really good player," Johnny Gaudreau, who has played against Agostino for years, said. "And he's only going to get better. It's great to have him in the same organization now."