Wey (white) chips the puck down the ice. (Photo credit: Chris Gordon)
After being drafted in the fourth-round (115th overall) in 2009, Patrick Wey has been to the last three Development Camps hosted by the Capitals, holding his own every time. The Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania native — more on that later — was a standout in American juniors with the Waterloo Black Hawks of the USHL before making the jump to Boston College. The powerhouse Eagles, who have one the deepest defensive corps in NCAA hockey, won a national championship his freshman year. Unfortunately, Wey missed the 2010 Frozen Four after contracting mononucleosis.
This past year, the 20 year-old continued his progression, tallying his first — and so far only — collegiate goal against the University of New Hampshire on March 5. Wey was also was one of five Capitals prospects to participate in the World Junior Championships in Buffalo, New York, capturing a Bronze medal with Team USA along with fellow BC d-man Brian Dumoulin. He is also a teammate of the Penguins’ 2009 second-round pick Philip Samuelsson, son of former Swedish NHL star Ulf Samuelsson and one of the last cuts from the 2011 US WJC team.
Much like us, Wey has a blog that primarily makes fun of the Russian Caps too.
Paintball yesterday was fun. … I think a lot of the Russians and some of the other guys would just hide in the back, they didn’t want to get hit. Which I don’t blame them for, some people got absolutely lit up.
After Friday’s workout, I spoke with Wey about his experience this week, being a former Pens fan and more.
Chris Gordon: You’re obviously a veteran of the these camps, what have you taken out of this one so far?
Patrick Wey: Just that you have to keep working. Actually, they have all this stuff they’ve been testing us on, they give you a benchmark and it’s just important so keep running your own race and pushing yourself. The talent level that’s been here, it never gets any easier no matter how old you are or how many years you’ve been here. It’s just been a good camp.
CG: Do they give you specific things you need to improve on with the “benchmark?”
PW: Sure. They’ve have a meeting today which is really helpful, really nice motivator. Things in your game that you need to improve on, it’s good in that regard.
CG: You were part of Team USA at the World Junior Championships and won a Bronze Medal. What what that experience like?
PW: It helped. It was a really fast-paced tournament so it me helped get used to the speed at the higher levels of camps like this and it was good to be able come into an environment where a lot of guys don’t know each other and haven’t played together and try to form a team right, step into a new system, which I think is just a good experience to have. There’s plenty of times during people’s playing careers where you get put in a situation like that.
CG: How about playing at Boston College? How has that helped you grow as a player?
PW: I’ve grown a lot. I think as person I’ve matured a lot in college and we’ve got really good coaches at BC: Greg Brown who works with the defense specially does a really good job. I think my strength has improved a lot, my skating, my decision making, everything.
CG: What are your plans? Do you hope to graduate?
PW: I’m just going to play it by ear, I’m not really sure. I’m definitely going to get my degree one way or another and hopefully go to graduate school. As for right now, I have no idea what the future has in store.
CG: You grew up in Pittsburgh. You must have been a Penguins fan growing up.
PW: Of course! Every kid cheers for their hometown team but obviously that’s going to have to change and it has changed!
CG: Have any of your friends back home given you any ribbing about that?
PW: I think everyone understands how it works. It’s funny, my family’s all from Baltimore and around here, around this area so they’re all Caps fans so it’s not a hard transition to make!
CG: Are there any current defenseman you try to model your game after?
PW: I got asked this question before and I gave a terrible answer. [laughs] I like Rob Scuderi a lot. I like the solid defensive guys that just kind of go about their business and keep it pretty low key and just get the job done.
Additional reporting by Fedor Fedin and Ian Oland.