On his style of play: I consider myself a two-way defenseman, one of my greatest assets is my skating ability and that allows me to be pretty mobile out there. I also like to consider myself a good passer, good puck mover; so those are two big strengths of mine.
On his skating ability: Growing up it took lots of practice, every chance I got going to free skate at Winnetka ice rink. Every day after school my parents would drop me off at the rink. Hours and hours of practice I guess molded me into the skater that I am today.
On patterning his game: Scott Niedermayer; he’s such a fluid skater and I really try to model my game after him. He’s responsible in his own end and he can create offense from the back end. He’s a really exciting player to watch and I really try to model my game after him.
On going from a small, seventh defenseman on the Steel to the captain and a top NHL Draft prospect: It’s been a little bit of an eye opener and pretty crazy! If you would have told me that two years ago starting with the Steel that I’d be in this position, I would have thought you were crazy. But it’s been a lot of hard work put in these past two years, and it’s been a lot of fun. Hard work, dedication and love for the game, I think have gotten me here.
On his first hockey team and getting started in hockey: My dad was my first hockey coach, it was Winnetka House League sponsored by Travex Travel – my mom actually worked for the travel company. We lost the championship game of the house league and I still kind of give my dad a hard time about it, saying he was outcoached. When I was two year old they threw the skates on me and that’s how I started skating right by the rink. I was a little bit of a mop out there but I got better day by day.
On growing his passion for the game: From the first moment I strapped on the skates, I thought ‘I just love this game’ and it’s an undying passion that still to this day nothing in the world that I’d rather be doing than playing hockey. From day one I just love it.
On his childhood hockey idol: My childhood hockey would have to be Chris Chelios that was before he made the move to Detroit and became an enemy in a way. But he was my big idol and I’d always pretend I was Chris Chelios playing in the driveway or outside.
On a memorable moment as a NHL fan: A moment for me was after a Blackhawks game I was with my dad and I ran into Eric Daze and he gave me a stick. I’ll never forget that day and that stick is still in my room, so it was a great day.
On the possibility of being drafted into the NHL in June: To be drafted anywhere would be a tremendous honor. It’s a day I’m looking forward to but at the same time I just have to keep working hard, there are a lot of things from here to that day that have to be done. I still have to put in the work but to hear my name in June anywhere would be a tremendous honor.