Monday, September 1, 2008

NHL.com: Brendan Smith

NHL.com has an article today on Brendan Smith. (Thanks to DPlaya of HIW for pointing it out.)

Some quotes from Mike Eaves:
"He's still got lots to learn, but he's like that mustang that you corral and now you have to break him down a bit," Eaves said. "He has those things you can't teach, but you have to guide that energy, spirit and athleticism. That's the part we're in right now, still harnessing that."

"That's our hope," Eaves said. "There is definitely work to be done, but we think that with his ability, and now that he has a good solid half year under his belt after learning a ton, he should find it easier to play."

"Detroit looks at him as a young, talented hockey player who plays defense," Eaves said. "If he can learn to play better without the puck, he can turn into a well-rounded player and should be able to make the next step."

A quote from Wings Assistant GM Jim Nill:
"He's a very good skater, can jump into the play, and has some offensive upside to him," Nill said.

And a quote from Brendan himself:
"This season is huge because I want to come out just flying," Smith said. "I already have that first year under my belt. That's a big year because you are adjusting to everything, but this is a huge year. It helps everyone see where I'm going to end up, if I'm going to go the full four years or if I have a big year maybe it's only three years. I want to be one of the top defensemen and go from there."

I'm glad he wants to be one of the top defensemen, but it sounds to me (and maybe it's just me) that he's more focused on when he might leave rather than how he might play with the Badgers. Yeah, everyone's goal is to make the NHL as soon as possible, but Smith's quote just sounded odd to me.