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Greenway wants to make big impact with Wild

At 6-foot-6, 226 pounds, forward prospect aims to stand out in NHL one day

by Jessi Pierce / NHL.com Correspondent

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- For Minnesota Wild forward prospect Jordan Greenway, the decision between turning pro or returning for his junior season at Boston University wasn't easy.

Greenway, 20, said he feels NHL-ready. But he feels a stronger pull to go back for his third season with the Terriers.

"The job isn't done there yet," he said.

"I want to win a lot more championships [in Boston]. I want to find a way to create more offense for myself [at the college level] first, and be more of an impact player when I come in here [to the Wild].

"I don't want to be average. I want to come in and have an impact for a while as soon as I can, so going back to school for one more year, that's what I'm going to do."

 

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The Wild selected Greenway in the second round (No. 50) of the 2015 NHL Draft. At 6-foot-6, 226 pounds, he has the body Minnesota needs to dominate down low and around the net.

Wild director of player development Brad Bombardir said he sees major strides in the power forward, who attended his third development camp with Minnesota in July.

"He's starting to learn what his strengths really are," Bombardir said. "Taking pucks to the net. Forcing himself to the front of the net. Living in the blue paint as much as he can. Those are his strengths. He would do that maybe once in a while a couple years ago. Now he's really starting to realize that that's where his game lies, and he has to play that way night in and night out."

Greenway is quick to acknowledge Boston University coach David Quinn and his staff for helping him hone his skills and utilize his assets -- primarily his size -- to his advantage.

Video: 2017 Development Camp: Jordan Greenway

"I think I've grown a lot in a lot of areas," Greenway said. "My coaching staff back at BU has helped me out a ton, so I think that I've found ways to perfect my game down low and create a lot of offense. That's why I'm going to go back and hopefully fine tune it a little bit more."

Greenway improved on a 26-point rookie season with 31 points (10 goals, 21 assists) as a sophomore. His four game-winning goals led Boston University, which made its third consecutive trip to the NCAA tournament last season.

The Canton, New York, native also helped the United States win a gold medal in three tournaments: the 2014 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, 2015 IIHF World Under-18 Championship and 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship, where he had eight points (three goals, five assists) in seven games. Greenway also was on the U.S. team that finished fifth in the World Hockey Championship.

Greenway hopes to make a similar impression in Minnesota, but first thing's first.

"My first goal is to do everything I can to help BU," he said. "I think I've really got to lead this team at BU. Like I said, I want to win a lot more championships there. If we're going to do that I've got to lead the team and have a pretty big impact.

"I think I could play professional hockey, for sure, but … I don't just want to blend in. I think going back to school for one year will help me do that."

The Wild hope so, too.

"At some point he's going to have to turn pro," Bombardir said. "That's the next step [but] we are going to see where he's at. The NHL is a monster… It's going to be playing against the size and the strength of players in the pro game. And that's either in the National Hockey League or the American Hockey League. The guys are smarter, bigger, faster, stronger. That's where he'll start to refine his game even more.

"There shouldn't be a player that can defend against him. If he's on his game, and he's willing to play the game the right way, the way that he needs to play it, there should be not many guys [who can stop him], certainly at the level he's playing at now, and even the guys at the next level."

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