In one of his first interviews after signing a three-year contract with the Boston Bruins, Andy Hilbert told Peter Baptista of Hockey’s Future how excited he was to officially be a Bruin and also his plans to make the Bruins roster next season.
To read the article about Hilbert’s signing, Click Here
PB:How does it feel to officially be a Boston Bruin?
AH : It’s a great feeling. I worked my entire life to be a pro player especially to be a Boston Bruin. I can’t put it into words how excited I am and how hard I’ve worked for this. I am just extremely excited.
PB:Did the Bruins influence your decision at all?
AH: Not really. They told me there was a great opportunity in Boston and it was hard to pass up but the decision was basically mine.
PB:When did you make your final decision to turn pro?
AH: Sunday night
PB:Did you inform Red Berenson or the Bruins first?
AH:I informed the Bruins first and then Red and my teammates at Michigan.
PB:What do you think your odds of making the Bruins out of camp are?
AH:My goal is to make the team. I will work as hard as possible to obtain that goal. I will try and be prepared as possible in camp. Hopefully I’ll make the team but I’ll just work hard and let what happens, happen.
PB:If you do not make the Bruins, would you go to Providence (AHL) or Windsor (OHL) who drafted you?
AH: Probably go to Providence. One of the risks of leaving school is not making the team. Hopefully I’ll be prepared enough to play for Boston.
PB:What do you think is the strongest point in your game?
AH: Intensity and the edge I play with. I play my best and am most successful when I play with that edge and intensity.
AH:You can always improve on all areas but a lot of people tell me I need to work on my consistency. Just play hard and do the same things every night.
PB: What are your workout plans for the summer, if any?
AH:I am heading to Boston on Monday and am going to spend a week there and get acclimated with everything including the trainer. We’ll see after that.
PB: Where do you think you could learn most: 4th line duty (5-8:00 minutes/game) in the NHL or 2nd line duty in the AHL?
AH:Not sure. Both places have their good points. Playing in the NHL you gain NHL experience and learn from NHLers. While in the AHL you play a lot and just get acclimated to the pro game.
PB:What do you know about Bruins new head coach Robbie Ftorek?
AH: Not much. I know he’s great with young guys and he’s a hard worker. I’m looking forward to meeting him.
PB:What do you think of the Bruins recent free agent signings (O’Donnell, Lapointe, Zaumner)?
AH: Great players who are great for the Bruins. Adds depth to the Bruins roster.
PB:In your opinion, what is the B’s most pressing need right now?
AH: Not sure. I will be able to say more when I’m around them a bit more. This year I mainly focused on playing at Michigan.
PB:It’s tough to jump from any level right to the NHL but many say its toughest to jump from college to the NHL. Would you agree? Why or why not?
AH:I don’t agree with that. College you play against guys a lot older than you and it helps you prepare for the jump. It’s a big jump from anywhere though. Major junior are younger guys so that to affects the jump. You can just never be prepared enough for the jump.
PB:Compare yourself to one NHLer.
AH:Chris Drury. Close to his size, we play almost the same style. We both play both ends of the ice, along the boards, and a tough game.
PB:Would you like to finish your degree taking summer courses?
AH:Definitely. Goal of mine is to finish my college degree.
PB:Did Wolverines head coach Red Berenson try and talk you out of turning pro?
AH: No. He supported my decision. He said they’d love to have my back but it was my decision and he supports it. The entire coaching staff and all my teammates also support it.
PB:Did Red give you any advice for the NHL when you told him you were turning pro?
AH: Make sure you show people you know how to play with the puck. Work hard every night and remember that scoring goals isn’t everything, you need to play defensive hockey also.
Off The Ice Questionnaire
Full name: Andrew John Hilbert
Nickname: Hill or Hilby
Family: Scott (Dad), Kathy (Mom), Carson (Sister)
Birthplace: Lansing, MI
Current Residence: Howell, MI
Favorite team growing up: Detroit Red Wings
Favorite NHL player: Pavel Bure
Most memorable hockey moment: Beating Team Canada in World Junior Tournament in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Favorite Movie: Good Will Hunting
Worst movie you ever saw: The Animal
Favorite Actor: Tom Hanks
Favorite Actress: Gwyneth Paltrow
Favorite TV Show: Friends
Favorite Food: Lasagna
Favorite Restaurant: Palio
Favorite Music Artist: Dave Matthews Band
Favorite type of Music: Rock
Favorite vacation spot: Hawaii
Favorite car: Porsche 911
Favorite Web Site: hockeysfuture.com
Type of Computer: IBM Lap top
Stick used: Easton Synergy
Advice to anyone w/NHL dreams: Work as hard as possible. When people try and bring you down, don’t listen. Just work hard and your dreams will come true.