Below is the transcript of my chat with 2001 Philadelphia Flyers draft pick , and Red Deer Rebels defenseman Jeff Woywitka.
Hockey’s Future : Red Deer finished the season as the top ranked junior team in Canada , what do you think contributed to you guys having such a great season?
Jeff Woywitka : Everyone on the team really stayed with the program during the course of the season. We had a goal at the begining of the season and that was to be number one at the end of the regular season , we accomplished that. Now it is time to focus on the playoffs.
HF : What were your feelings when you were drafted by the Flyers in the first round last summer? , Was there any one team you wanted to really be drafted by?
JW : I was happy to be picked by a first class team like the Flyers. They have a winning tradition , and I hope to be part of their plans in the near future. There wasn’t any one team I wanted to be drafted by , just to be selected was such an honor.
HF : Mikhail Yakubov , a rookie in the WHL was your leading goal scorer and point leader this season , how much did he contribute to your success’ this year?
JW : Mikhail was a huge part of our team and got better as the season wore on. His is a great leader in his own way.
HF : How is it playing in Red Deer? , So many NHL prospects come out of that program , does that really help your development playing up there?
JW : Red Deer is a terrific place to play. Brent Sutter , has taught me about what it takes to succeed on and off the ice. Playing here in Red Deer really does help you development cause you are expected to be at your best everyday.
HF: You attended training camp with the Flyers this past season what was that like?
JW : It was a great experience to meet the guys and play with some new guys. It was great to play with players you watched when you were young.
HF: Are you superstitious in anyway before a game?
JW : No , not at all.
HF : What do you think Red Deer needs to do d well in the WHL playoffs and hopefully reach the Memorial Cup?
JW : We need to take our game to a new level and take advantage of our home ice advantage.
Fact Sheet __________ Birthplace : Vermilion , Alberta Number : 6 Stick : Left Handed , Easton Synergy Childhood Hero : Bobby Orr
(I’d like to thank Jeff for taking time out of his schedule while preparing for the WHL playoffs to take part in this interview)