Sunday, September 12, 2010

Rookie Camp Day 1: Catching Up with Dustin Stevenson

Stevenson is on knee, center, blue sweater (photo by me)

Dustin Stevenson started off our interview with "Sorry if I smell bad."  Think I'm going to like this kid. 
(And for the record, I couldn't smell anything.  Probably because I was so cold at that point that all my senses were dulled.)

Rink Rebel: You were the first player from the SJHL to be signed by the NHL, so how did that feel?

Dustin Stevenson: Oh, it felt great.  It's everyone's dream, I think, it was my dream for sure, to sign an NHL contract.  I didn't think it was going to happen this soon, but it definitely felt real great.

RR: Most of the guys here are from collegiate hockey, KHL, CHL, how do you think your game would differ from that?

DS: I think I had good coaching where I played so I feel like I'm right with everyone in this camp, I don't feel out of place at all.  There are some good players here, and there's definitely a little bit more skill, but I feel like I fit in.

RR: Bruce had singled you out saying you had a good development camp, what did that do for your confidence?

DS: It helped my confidence a lot.  I mean especially for this camp, now coming back I kind of know where I fit in and where I sit with the guys and it definitely pumped the confidence up a bit.

RR: Obviously I understand why you picked the contract over your scholarship to St. Lawrence, but do you feel disappointed in a way that you had to forgo that scholarship?

DS: [shakes head] Not at all.  I don't look back on that decision at all, I think this is the best for my development, and that's a decision that me and my family made as soon as I got offered a contract.  So no, I'm not looking back on it.  I'm happy with the decision I made.

RR: People tend to compare your style to Chris Pronger, is that accurate?  Or who do you think your style of play is like?

DS: I guess it's fair to compare me to him, I'm not sure really, I just try and play my own style of game, but I guess I can see we're both kind of tall, puck-moving defensemen.

More interviews to come on Thursday!

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