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.
Before I even had to start thinking about the fitness test on Friday, I had a great opportunity to join teammate Stefan Matteau on Wednesday for a fun night out at the Playdium in Mississauga.
Thanks to NHL.com for arranging the trip and I think a video is being made documenting our trip, so it's possible we'll get to relive the memories on NHL.com sometime soon. The Playdium is like a Dave & Buster's Arcade kind of place with lots of different things to do. If was fun … like being a kid again.
It was just good to get out of the hotel for a couple of hours and have some fun. Not that interviewing with NHL teams wasn't fun but, well, you get the idea.
The go-karts were alright. My car stopped halfway through so I got lapped by Matteau and he loved that. But the final camera angle has me in front of Matteau, even though he really lapped me. But that's fine with me because now it looks like I won -- and it's on tape.
Overall, I know it was a great opportunity to give fans an idea how we are outside the hockey helmet. We're ordinary teenagers I guess with a passion for hockey, that's all.
In addition to the go-karts, we went inside the batting cages and Matteau started bragging a little too much and tried to hit a baseball but couldn't do it, so he decided to go slow-pitch softball. Meanwhile, I was trying to hit 50 mile-per hour baseballs and connected on a few.
We also did a few arcade games, including a big air hockey match. I really wanted that one, but was on the short end of a 7-6 loss. Imagine that, Matteau scores the winner late in a game. Where have I heard that before? It was a back-and-forth game, so it was all good.
Well, that's it for now. I'm gearing up for my fitness test at 10:30 a.m. ET on Friday now. I'll submit one more blog entry following that test. Thanks for reading.