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Top Trio Finish With Team Interviews

Jones, MacKinnon & Drouin speak about interviews with teams, trick questions and the week.
Friday, 05.31.2013 / 8:10 AM ET
By Glenn Odebralski - FloridaPanthers.com / Panthers Insider
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Top Trio Finish With Team Interviews

The interview process at this year's Combine wasn't just enjoyed by the Panthers brass, but the 2013 potential picks also enjoyed their time with the clubs.

Speaking at a Media Availability on Thursday following being added as Reebok-CCM's newest athletes as they picked up new endorsement deals, the top three North American skaters, Seth Jones, Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin all spoke about their week and the interviews with the teams.

"It was obviously a lot of fun going to all those interviews and meeting with a bunch of different teams," said the Portland Winterhawks defenseman, Jones. "Still feels a little surreal that the draft is coming so close now."

"It's been great here in Toronto at the combine," added MacKinnon, the most recent Memorial Cup MVP from the Halifax Mooseheads. "You hear about it every year and it's pretty cool that you can check it off your list of accomplishments. I think the interview process has gone through pretty smoothly. Different teams have different approaches to talking to you but it's gone well."

"I think we're enjoying the interviews and we're liking what we see," said Drouin, the Halifax winger who was the MVP of the QMJHL playoffs. "It's a lot of interviews back-to-back and we don't have a lot of time off but it's been pretty smoothly and we're enjoying it."

While they may have been ranked higher in Central Scouting's final rankings, the third ranked North American skater Drouin had the one up, or even two up as he finished the interview session of the combine, interviewing with 19 NHL teams, two more than Jones or MacKinnon.

"It's not that bad. Obviously there's a lot of possibility, a lot of things that happen," said Drouin. "Down the road, you never know what can happen, you could end up with one of those teams. They just want to get a feel for what kind of person you are."

"I don't know if it was a coincidence but we both had the same number of teams," said MacKinnon of his interview number comparison with Jones' total. "I don't know if it was different teams or what but I think while you're here, it's important to meet teams. You don't know what the future holds...There could be trades or anything like that on draft day. Nice to meet them and got to be prepared for it."

As far as the questioning from the teams? The trio did find some of them that they had to pause and think about.

"One tough question that I got was what kind of hockey player would I be if I couldn't skate," said MacKinnon. "It shook me a little bit because my whole game is around speed and a tough one to answer but little ones like that that put you in the spot and take you a few seconds to answer but it's been good."

"One team asked me and what I did if I didn't have hands, like what kind of player would you be," said Drouin. "It's kind of a hard question to answer. Just chip the puck in and go."

"A lot of tough questions," said Jones. "They try to trick you all the time. I don't know. I can't give you one but there definitely a lot of them."

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 252 192 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 242 203 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 252 230 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 221 210 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 236 250 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 215 234 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 181 216 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 188 226 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Huberdeau 79 15 39 10 54
J. Jokinen 81 8 36 -2 44
N. Bjugstad 72 24 19 -7 43
A. Ekblad 81 12 27 12 39
B. Boyes 78 14 24 11 38
A. Barkov 71 16 20 -4 36
J. Hayes 72 19 16 -4 35
B. Campbell 82 3 24 4 27
B. Pirri 49 22 2 6 24
D. Bolland 53 6 17 4 23
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 28 19 12 .921 2.35
A. Montoya 6 7 2 .892 3.01
 
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