The Pittsburgh Penguins head into the 2014 NHL Draft under new management. Jim Rutherford, who retired from the Carolina Hurricanes general manager position in late April, was hired in early June to take the same job in Pittsburgh. Head coach Dan Bylsma was fired the same day Rutherford was hired, and while the Penguins have yet to find a replacement, Rutherford is optimistic a head coach will be in place by the start of free agency on July 1st.
After watching his father Ulf play more than a decade in the NHL, Philip Samuelsson always knew that hockey was in his future. And like his father, young Samuelson patrols the blueline as he continues to inch closer to the NHL himself.
Playing this past season with the Chicago Steel in the USHL, Philip is just another 2009 eligible player the scouts have been looking at out of the East Division. At 6’2 and 200 lbs., Samuelsson already has comparable size to his father and is also a defensive-defenseman. And while he doesn’t have quite the feistiness his dad had, Samuelsson is developing quite the edge.
Hockey’s Future had a chance to catch up with Samuelsson as he gets ready with Team USA for the 2009 IIHF Under-18 World Championships in Fargo, North Dakota. He talked about growing up and playing the game, his play at various levels, his game, and what the future holds.
Philip Samuelsson: Well obviously I was around the game a lot with my dad playing in the NHL. So I got thrown into that at a really early age and just figured out that it was one thing that I wanted to do. So from there, I’ve just been around it ever since.