Calm before draft storm for Klimchuk
- Morgan Klimchuk
CALGARY, AB -- Morgan Klimchuk has a set of calm hands when he's working around the rink.
The Regina Pats forward will try to keep that cool at the Prudential Center in New Jersey, the site of the 2013 NHL Draft.
Understandably the Calgary product, who played bantam with the Calgary Bisons and midget with the Buffaloes, is trying to stay poised as draft day approaches.
"I'll probably portray I'm calm but inside I'll be pretty nervous," Klimchuk said. "I'm hoping to go as high as possible and to the best team possible. Outside I'll be calm, but inside I'll be nervous."
Klimchuk, who found the back of the net 36 times in 72 games this season for the Pats, will find a new home on June 30th.
He's still got some unfinished business in Regina, though.
"From a team standpoint, I wasn't very happy with [the season]," the 5-foot-11, 180-pound left winger said. "We didn't make the playoffs and reach our goals. I think we grew a lot. We had a pretty young team this year and hopefully we'll be a bit better next year.
"Individually, I was pretty happy with the numbers I've put up. I think I contributed pretty consistently throughout the year and was a pretty big part of the success we did have in Regina."
The highly regarded goal scorer is 25th in Central Scouting's final ranking for the draft, which could put him in line to be picked by the Calgary Flames.
And he's more than aware of it.
"They've got a lot of picks in the first round," Klimchuk said. "It'd be very special. I'd love to play in my home town and feed off the pressure of that. I try not to think about that too much. I'll be happy wherever I go."
With just two weeks until he learns his destination, Klimchuk is keeping busy at Crash Conditioning in Calgary, working alongside the likes of Mike Green, Braydon Coburn and Jordan Eberle.
He's getting a crash course in what it takes to make it to the next level.
"You train alongside those guys, you skate alongside those guys and one of the best players in the world and they're still in here doing extra," Klimchuk said. "That's something you can really appreciate and to play at the next level, that's what it takes. It's impressive."
But aside from a handful of workouts, Klimchuk is enjoying some downtime from a season that started in August at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial and concluded in April at the World Under-18 Championship.
"In between the combine and draft and hopefully development camp, you kind of sit back a little bit, train and get ready for next season," Klimchuk said. "You're still doing interviews, you're still on your toes but it's not nearly as stressful as the past couple of weeks."
The calm before the storm for Klimchuk.