It probably speaks to a player’s willingness to be accountable when asked about “goals” and not about the score he scored, but what he felt was better. could work.
Meet defenseman Matt Helicson, who scored on a brilliant shot for a 3-2 lead but might have made a different choice on Columbus’ goal as the Maple Leafs’ prospects scored 4-3 overtime for the Blue Jackets at Traverse City decision was abandoned. , Mich., on Thursday.
“It’s their character,” said Greg Moore, head coach of the AHL’s Marleys and bench boss for the Leafs’ prospects in this tournament. “He’s a team person first. It’s nice to have people like that in the room.
“He’s a standup person, a great teammate and (it’s) a big reason why we keep him here.”
Helicson was drafted by the New Jersey Devils four years earlier, but opted to play his full four years at Notre Dame. He played a bit for the Devils’ minor-league team and was selected by the United States for the World Championships in Latvia in the spring. He was plus-7 with one assist in nine games for the bronze medal team.
“It was a great experience,” Helicson said. “The best things I’ve learned are they’re actually probably off the ice. I got to play with all those great players on the ice, seeing how a real team comes together and what happens in that type of tournament.” The harmony you should have.
“But they were such a high level player. It was so much fun waking up every single day and just being around those guys, just being able to pick their mind and learn from them. Don’t even talk, just watch, because they Have been a professional for a really long time.”
Learning that he could play with the pros, he wanted to take his game to the next level. But not with New Jersey.
“I just realized that the Devils weren’t the best fit,” Helicson said. “So I decided to wait until August 15th, the day you can become a free agent.”
The same is true for college players who play four years in the NCAA.
Ultimately he chose the Leafs.
You might think it was because he knows so many players in the organization. He calls Joy Anderson his best friend. He played with goalkeeper Joe Woll in the US National Development Program, and led Alex Steves with Fighting Irish.
But it was a relationship that grew very deep that brought him to Toronto.
Ryan Hardy, signed this summer as senior director of the organization’s minor-league teams and general manager of the Marleys, had scouted Helicson for the American program.
“I’ve known Mr Hardy since I was probably 14 years old,” Helicson said. “I have a great relationship with him.”
But there’s more to the story, an element that’s becoming increasingly common in the Leafs’ recruiting.
“What stuck out to me was just the amount of resources that each player has to take advantage of to become a better hockey player,” Helicson said. “Whatever you put into it is what you’re going to get out of it. So that was definitely the biggest selling point for me. Just all those people who helped me become a better hockey player.” are here.”
Steve scored the first goal in Thursday’s rookie game – set up by Nick Robertson – but left early with a shoulder injury. Semyon der-Arguchintsev made the Leafs 2-0 up. Helicson scored a third goal late in the second period for a 3–2 lead. Ian Scott draws the assignment in the nets.
“It was really cool for the first game,” Moore said of Helicson. “He’s not practicing with us like a lot of others have done in the past few days, so for him to step up and just video and go out and apply, he did really well.
“He’s a keeper we’re really excited about.”
At six feet and 183 pounds, he played mostly with Joe Duszak, who could be a pair with the Marlies this season. He has good hands and puck-handling abilities.
“I’ve been waiting all summer for this to come,” Helicson said. “It’s been a while since I’ve played a game, so it’s really fun to go back to the pace level of the game.”