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Jones heading home after Combine experience

by Seth Jones

Seth Jones is a defenseman for the Portland Winterhawks of the Western Hockey League. The 6-foot-4, 205-pounder has solid athletic bloodlines -- his father, Popeye Jones, played 11 seasons in the NBA. The top-ranked player in NHL Central Scouting's final ranking of North American skaters eligible for the 2013 NHL Draft, Jones was named the best professional prospect in the WHL, and helped the United States win the gold medal at the 2013 World Junior Championship. Jones has offered to maintain a monthly blog for that will chronicle his season leading up to the 2013 NHL Draft.

TORONTO -- Checking in from the NHL Scouting Combine for one final time.

My day started pretty early -- the alarm went off at 7:20 a.m. It was a pretty early morning. I had some breakfast and we left the hotel at 8 a.m. for 8:30 medical testing. That took about two hours, an hour longer than it said on the schedule. Little frustrating, but everyone had to do it.

Then came the fitness testing room. That felt weird, for sure. You have hundreds of people's eyes staring at you and staring a hole through you. Cameras in your face, those sorts of things. It definitely is weird. You take your shirt off and everyone is still staring at you and it feels a little more weird. It definitely was an experience to remember.

I did the height and weight measurements and they tested my body fat, but that was it. I skipped out on the fitness tests. We made the decision a couple days ago. My agent, Pat Brisson, pulled me aside and said how are you feeling and those sorts of things. I've been nursing a couple injuries during the year. He said he thinks that it's best that I take the fitness off. I haven't had time to prepare for it. It was definitely both of our decisions.

Then I had some media things to take care. There was a big scrum, and that was pretty hectic, but I enjoyed it. I did an interview with NHL Network and TSN, and then Sportsnet.

Now I'm done and I'm heading home to Dallas, with nothing planned but some sleep. I'll just enjoy the time with my family and spend as much time with them as I can before the draft.

The Combine was fun. It definitely was an experience to remember.

Follow Seth Jones on Twitter: @seth_jones 03

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