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Top draft prospect Jacob Trouba set for NHL Combine

by Jacob Trouba
Jacob Trouba is a defenseman for the U.S. Under-18 National Team Development Program of the United States Hockey League. The 6-foot-2, 193-pound native of Rochester, Mich., was the youngest player on the U.S. National Junior Team at the 2012 World Junior Championship in Edmonton and Calgary, Alta. He also won his second straight gold medal for Team USA at the Under-18 World Championship in Czech Republic, connecting for one goal, three points and a plus-5 rating in six games. Trouba has agreed to give fans a players' perspective while attending the 2012 NHL Combine, scheduled May 28-June 2, by blogging his experiences for

Since the hockey season officially ended when we (the U.S. National Under-18 Team) skated to a 7-0 victory over Sweden for the gold, I've been working hard to stay in shape. It was important for me to continue my normal routine with lifting. And I've added a little bit more running to my workout on top of that. At this point, I think whatever I've done in the past month won't drastically change my scores at the NHL Scouting Combine. I'm relying on the work I've put in the last two years at the National Team Development Program to help me through these drills.

I'm really looking forward to the experience of participating in something I've worked so hard for (the Combine) since I knew I wanted to be a pro hockey player. It's an honor to be invited to this event and it is something few people get to do. I want to soak it all in because it will be a memory I hold with me the rest of my life. I want to show everyone what I can do at these tests. It should be fun; a challenge.

I've heard some horror stories about the bike test, but despite all of the talk, it's not keeping me up at night. I'm actually looking forward to it. I can't worry about it. That's not me. At the end of the day, I have little control over who picks me in the draft. Whether I go early or not, I'm still going to be the same player I was going into the draft. What excites me most is the opportunity to meet a lot of cool people along the way. Because in the end, it's all about the experience!

Follow Jacob Trouba on Twitter at: @jacobtrouba

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