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Wheat Kings' Quenneville set to impress at Combine

by Mike G. Morreale

TORONTO -- Wonder what the topic of discussion was when Brandon Wheat Kings center John Quenneville visited the interview room of the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday here at the NHL Scouting Combine?

Quenneville, a second cousin to Chicago Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville and nephew (through marriage) of Boston Bruins defenseman Johnny Boychuk, had 25 goals and 58 points in 61 Western Hockey League games this season. He is No. 23 on NHL Central Scouting's final list of the top North American skaters eligible for the 2014 NHL Draft.

He told that the meeting with the Blackhawks was "interesting."

Perhaps Quenneville offered some words of encouragement for the Blackhawks staff in attendance. Chicago trails its Western Conference Final series against the Los Angeles Kings 3-1. Game 5 is Wednesday at United Center in Chicago (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

"Los Angeles is playing great hockey, but there are so many good players on Chicago; I still think they can make a series of it so long as they dig deep," he said.

Quenneville said because of his busy schedule he rarely gets to talk to his uncle, and in fact admitted to being an Edmonton Oilers fan. Despite that, he still is in the crosshairs of many NHL scouts and general managers.

"I liked [Quenneville] a lot," Central Scouting's David Gregory said. "He's a hard worker; he works hard to possess the puck. He makes good plays very quickly and is good at moving the puck. I'd like to see more consistency from him, but I like the way he finds open spaces and his ability to make any kind of pass."

Quenneville has enjoyed the experience at the Scouting Combine so far. He has 25 interviews scheduled with NHL teams before taking part in the fitness testing Saturday at the Toronto International Centre.

"It's been an interesting experience meeting with all the teams and GM's," Quenneville said. "The fitness testing is important and I did a lot of work for that and have even begun preparing for next year. The interviewing process isn't that bad. I just want to be myself and I know it'll pay off for me."


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