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by Staff Writer / Buffalo Sabres
[Editor's Note:  Hobey Baker runner-up and Sabres prospect, Nathan Gerbe, answered questions following the opening day of Buffalo's Development Camp.  Gerbe agreed to terms on an entry level contract on May 6. 

Gerbe (7/24/1987, 5’6”, 160 lbs.) led the nation in scoring this season with 68 points (35+33) in 43 games, five more than Hobey Baker Award winner Kevin Porter of Michigan. Gerbe scored points in 30 of 43 games, including a career-best five point (4+1) outing at Harvard on Dec. 12/07.]

So what did you think out there?

“It was fun to get on the ice, get your feet back and get your skills back.”

You got out there and played alongside [Tim] Kennedy for a while.  Is that something you could get used to in Portland?

“He’s a great player and was a great player all through college.  That’s why he excelled at Michigan State.  He’s starting his professional career just like me. 

“We’re both excited to play alongside each other.  Sometimes we’re on the same line, sometimes we’re not.   It’s always fun to create some chemistry.”

How was your trip to Washington, D.C. with the rest of your Boston College teammates?

“It was good.  Meeting the President was pretty fun.  Going to the White House was an eye opener, as was going to the Riverside Walter Reed Memorial Hospital.   Seeing the troops and what they sacrifice for us was really overwhelming.  To me, those men and women are the real heroes of our country.  Not professional athletes.

“But overall, it was a great award for our team to meet the President and tour the White House.”

Was there a question of whether or not you would make it back here for the first day of camp?

“We had no trouble getting back… it was just a long day.

“I was up since [Tuesday] at 5:30 a.m. so it’s really been just nonstop.    I just want to get a good night rest and get going again [Thursday].”

What are you trying to get out of this camp?

“I’m just looking to get my skills shaper, meet the other prospects and other guys who are also competing for spots.  It’s always fun to come out here and play the game.  A camp like this really helps you get into shape and start your summer off on the right note.  You’ve got to come back in August, so right now, is just a stepping stone.”

Is this camp a little bit different because you know you’re trying to earn a spot on the roster?

“Every year, you want to come in and do well.  That’s always your main goal whether you’re signed or not signed.  You always want to come in and make a good impression.  I try not to think about having any pressure on me.  I’m going to just go out there and play my game.  I’m not going to do anything different than what I did last year.

“This year I may be a little stronger or a little faster, but that’s the only difference.”

How many familiar faces are out there?

“There are a lot of kids that I know from last year’s camp.  We all got to meet each other then so it was nice to come in and see each other.  There are some faces that are new; like the recently drafted players.

“Hopefully, I can help them along the way being a little bit older and having a little bit more experience.”

Did you stay in touch with any of the guys throughout the season?

“Yes, I stayed in touch with Chris Butler and Tim Kennedy.  We always gave each other a congrats after games we watched on TV or the internet.  We’re a close bunch here and I think that’s what’s going to help down the road. 

“Myself, Butler and Kennedy all keep in pretty close contact through the year.”

Watch Gerbe's Full Interview on Sabres TV
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