Not necessarily about the player as much as the situation. Wroblewski was coaching the 2016-17 U.S. national U-18 team when the little brother of star defenseman Quinn Hughes tagged along for a skate.
That little brother was Jack Hughes and Wroblewski had yet to see him play.
“You sort of ask the questions, OK, well how often do you have a 15-year-old skating with a U-18 team and how good is the kid?” Wroblewski said.
“The answer is he’s pretty good, he’s pretty good,” Wroblewski said with a laugh last Wednesday in a phone interview with NBC Sports Philadelphia. “We’ve got to keep an eye on him. You get him out there and instantaneously he fits in and exceeds cheap nhl jerseys china
and then also enamors you — all three of these observationalist thought processes come to your senses in that hour and a half skate of this tiny, little kid who somehow comes out and impresses you so much within that short period of time.
“Not only with his skill level, but kind of how some of the great players out there, how they can make the game slow down or speed up at their will. It’s tough to describe unless you’ve been around him.”
Wroblewski has been around him a bunch, coaching Hughes for the second straight season in the U.S. national team development program.
Unequivocally, he now knows all about the 17-year-old, a darting and dynamic center whose playmaking ability can cause motion sickness for opponents.
Before the start of 2018-19, Hughes was hardly a blip on the Flyers’ radar. Not with the team signing James van Riemsdyk to bolster an experienced roster and take its biggest step since the 2011-12 season. The NHL draft was an afterthought.
Oh, how things have changed.
The Flyers entered the All-Star break at 19-23-6 and with more points (44) than only two other NHL teams — the Devils (43) and Senators (43). A startling shake-up within the front office and coaching staff became the messy byproduct of another slow start, this one the most impactful of them all.
Suddenly but inevitably, Hughes’ name has permeated the fan base. He is widely considered the consensus No. 1 pick for the 2019 NHL draft.
And Flyers fans are astutely aware.
The golden spot is in sight.