Well schooled Morrissey ready for draft day
CALGARY, AB -- As the recipient of the Daryl K. (Doc) Seaman Trophy as the Western Hockey League's scholastic player of the year, Josh Morrissey is pretty bright.
Smart enough to know not to pay too much attention to the fact that the Calgary Flames weren't among the 24 teams that took the time to interview him at the NHL Scouting Combine.
"I don't think you can read too much into it," the Calgary product said. "A lot of times from what I've heard, guys go into the draft thinking that there's a team that the interview went great and they're going to get them for sure and all of a sudden they pass by him and don't take him and then a team that hasn't talked to them picks him."
Morrissey, who had a 92 per cent average in his Grade 12 studies at Carlton Comprehensive High School, wasn't stressed that the Flames were just one of six teams he didn't sit down with.
Far from it, in fact.
"I'm not too concerned about that," Morrissey said. "I think, from what I've heard and what I've been told, just go in with an open mind and excited. It's an exciting day wherever you go. I guess in that sense, there's not too much to read into but obviously all teams do things differently."
After officially wrapping up his season at the conclusion of the combine, Morrissey has been able to relax and enjoy the the weeks leading up to the 2013 NHL Draft in New Jersey on June 30th.
A much needed break after playing 74 regular season and playoff games for the Raiders sandwiched by gold medal finishes at the 2012 Ivan Hlinka Memorial in August and the 2013 World Under-18 Championship in April.
But that doesn't mean he won't work up a sweat on draft day.
"I hope the air conditioning is on, that's for sure," he said. "It'll be exciting and it'll be a fun day. I'll be there with all my family. I guess for them and for myself, it's kind of a pretty big milestone obviously and shows that all the work's paid off, all those early mornings and all the money my parents have spent over the years for me.
"I think for all of us, it's kind of a huge day, but definitely an exciting point in my career for everybody in my family."
With the combine in the rearview and the draft in the forefront, Morrissey has his first opportunity to relax in the better part of 10 months - sort of.
"All the work is done for the draft and now it's just a waiting game, but for me, I definitely want to get a lot stronger this offseason," he said. "I'm working at that now and it's nice to finally have time to really train, not just for the combine. In that sense, it's nice."
He's getting a first hand look how to train for the next level at Crash Conditioning, a training facility in Calgary's southwest.
On any given day, a collection of National Hockey League players can be found being put through the paces, including the likes of Jordan Eberle, Mike Green and Braydon Coburn.
"I started here four years ago now and have seen guys like Ebs and such great role models like that," Morrissey said. "Seeing a whole bunch of other NHL-type players, you learn a lot about work ethic.
"You don't try to bug them too much but when they have little things they tell you or teach you, you are eyes wide open. Especially as a young kid growing up, you don't come into contact a lot of times with NHL players so to be in the gym right next to them, it's pretty cool and it definitely helps you prepare and learn."
He's continually educating himself about what it takes to take his game to the next level.
Something that shouldn't come as a surprise as the WHL's top student.