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Physical testing can reveal strength of character

by Arpon Basu

TORONTO -- While NHL scouts, general managers and strength coaches are focused on the physical attributes of the prospects taking part in the fitness testing portion of the NHL Scouting Combine, at times there are other traits that come shining through during the exercise.

Ottawa Senators director of player personnel Pierre Dorion shared one such instance of that occurring, and it involves a player that now has become part of the NHL's elite.

In 2006, Dorion and current Senators assistant GM Tim Murray were working for the New York Rangers when they were eyeing a slender forward prospect preparing for the bench press test.

Gatineau center Claude Giroux didn't weigh much back then, but he already was being well-recognized for his competitiveness and intangibles.

"I remember Tim goes to Claude and asks him, 'How many bench presses can you do?'" Dorian said. "And if you remember Claude at the time was about 160 pounds. So he goes to Tim, 'I'll do 10.' That is pretty good for a guy his size, and we said not a chance. We show up there, and he did 13. It just shows you about the kid’s character."

Giroux was selected by the Philadelphia Flyers with the 22nd pick in the 2006 draft -- one spot after the Rangers selected defenseman Bobby Sanguinetti.

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