Getting your name called by an NHL general manager is just the tip of the iceberg.
For weeks prior to that moment, there are interviews and workouts and more interviews and reporters and goofy photo opportunities and smiling every minutes while probably thinking, "oh God, what if I don't get drafted at all...?" And after being called, there's a tornado of interviews with people that will be in your face all the time, people you'll never see again, people from other countries that want to talk to you, TV cameras, voice recorders, cell phone cameras, more official goofy photo opportunities and kids wanting your first autograph as an NHL prospect.
Somewhere in all that noise, you need to actually process and talk about the massive turning point that just happened in your life.
Michael Dal Colle
Dal Colle's first interview as a member of the New York Islanders can be read in full here. He seems like a reserved, mature young man who already has the NHL interview cadence down cold. A few excerpts of interest:
Q. How does it feel to be an Islander?
MICHAEL DAL COLLE: Amazing. A dream come true. It's been a pretty busy last week for me and my family, and now that it's over with, it feels great.
Q. Did the Isles talk to you a lot?
MICHAEL DAL COLLE: They talked with me this morning and they met with me, so I kind of had a gut feeling I was going here if I was available, and it worked out great.
MICHAEL DAL COLLE: Well, actually I just got called by John Tavares and Kyle Okposo, so that was pretty cool. And they just welcomed me to the team, and Josh Bailey just sent me a text, so it's been pretty good.
Q. Growing up did you try to pattern yourself after someone in hockey?
MICHAEL DAL COLLE: Well, my favorite player is Malkin growing up. Now I don't think anymore, but he was my favorite player, but I think a similar style might be a guy like Jeff Carter. I like the way he plays.
(Dan note: Seeing "Malkin" and "growing up" together like that is just absurd. I feel like Malkin was drafted yesterday. How old does that make me?)
A lot of people have already had a lot to say about late first round pick Josh Ho-Sang and in his first interview after being drafted, Ho-Sang showed some glimpses of the honesty and personality that has rubbed some in the buttoned-up hockey world the wrong way. His energy is palpable. (thanks to Adam from College Hockey News for the transcript)
Just kinda sitting there waiting, it was great seeing all my friends drafted, especially Michael Dal Colle -- I've known him a very long time. He's a great player, and the fact I got to put on the same jersey as him is a great honor.
I had two meetings with the Islanders and both of them went very well. It's an honor. ... They talked to me about me, and when they took the time to get to know me, I knew that the Islanders were definitely a team that would be interested, because they understand I'm not really that different. I'm just a little more outspoken.
It's amazing, the fact that they traded two seconds away (from Tampa's time expiring) to pick me, that just shows they believe in me, and that's all I really need. And I'll give them everything I have, I'll push until I can't breathe.
I have 26 teams to show that they missed out, and I definitely have to show the Islanders that they were right.
I actually got a call from John Tavares, and that was amazing actually, because he's a top-five player in the NHL, clearly. Just to hear his voice and to hear he's happy to have you, is pretty cool.
(Dan Note: apparently, Spitfires GM Warren Rychel's nickname is "Jughead," which is hilarious.)
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