EDMONTON, AB - At the 2010 NHL Draft in Los Angeles, then-Boston Bruins General Manager Peter Chiarelli called forward Ryan Spooner's name on stage in the second round at 45th overall to officially welcome him to the National Hockey League.
Eight years and five months later, now at the helm of the Edmonton Oilers, Chiarelli was the first to call the 26-year-old to welcome him to the Oilers organization, only this time by phone.
"He gave me a call right after it happened and I was surprised," the Ottawa, Ontario product said to EdmontonOilers.com. "We chatted and I told him how excited I was to get there and he said the same thing. Hopefully I can get back to playing the game I know I can play."
Spooner recorded 41 points (13 G, 28 A) in 59 games last season split between the Boston Bruins and New York Rangers, including 16 points in 20 games in New York after arriving in Manhattan as part of a deadline-day deal for Rick Nash.
With the Bruins under Chiarelli was where Spooner was also introduced to Milan Lucic, who played a role in helping him adjust to the league as a rookie after playing parts of three seasons with the big man in Beantown. Spooner's former Peterborough Petes linemate Zack Kassian is another familiar face he's excited to reconnect with as an Oiler.
"I actually played on the same line with him for a bit, too," Spooner added. "I was 21 or 22 when I played with him and he was great to me and always positive, so that was definitely something good to see.
"Then I actually played with Zack Kassian with the Peterborough Petes for two seasons when I was 16 or 17. He was my linemate there too. It's been a while, so I'm definitely excited to see him too."