Congratulations to Jack Ryan, centre, who was the 12th-round selection of the Soo Greyhounds in the OHL Draft on Saturday, April 3!
"It was a great moment," said Ryan to Mike Davies of the Peterborough Examiner
. "I've been working my whole life for this moment. Now that it's come true I'm going to keep on working hard."(The Greyhounds) said they liked the way I play and I've heard great things about the city. I'm proud to go there."
See the post-draft interview with Jack: Tell us about your draft day experience. (Where were you, who were you with, how were you watching, what did the day feel like?
I was at my house. I was watching it with my mom, dad, and brothers. I was watching the draft on our tv and my phone. The day felt special, I’ve been waiting my whole life for this moment and it finally came true which was very special to me. It meant a lot to have my parents and brothers there with me. They have been there for me throughout this whole journey. After I saw my name I can’t describe the feeling. It was amazing. My phone starting going crazy with calls from my current and past coaches. The GM of the Soo called me and so did the coach. It was an amazing day.
What does it mean to be drafted by the Soo Greyhounds?
It was a dream come true. Being drafted by the Soo was the icing on the cake. When they first reached out to me in January they mentioned that they really liked my game and the type of player that I was. They asked if I were drafted to the Soo would I go and I said yes, it’s a dream come true. The Soo is a reputable and an excellent organization and develops players to be prepared for the next level. They have produced stars like Barret Hayden and I also like that in the past couple of years they have drafted players from Peterborough (Tyler Savard and Kalvyn Watson).
What do you feel you can bring to the Soo Greyhounds?
I believe my game fits very well with the Soo’s style and philosophy. My strengths are that I have a High Hockey IQ and my skating. I feel I will be a great fit in the Soo because they play a puck possession style of game. I play both ends of the ice really well too so that definitely helps.
What do you feel you need to do to be on the Soo’s opening day roster?
To make the Soo’s opening day roster I have to go into camp with confidence and knowing that I will make an impact. My focus in the offseason is increasing my strength and power. I will be competing against players who are older, bigger and stronger and I want to be prepared to compete at my highest level. I believe I have a shot and I have what it takes.
How are you preparing now?
Well without being on the ice I have had to be creative. I am skating using my Mars Blades on a regular basis to work on my stride and skating. I work with a personal trainer twice a week who has developed a personalized program to increase my strength and my explosive power. I also do weight training 4 days a week. Of course I take shots and work on stick handling every day. I am doing everything it takes so that I enter training camp in the best shape I can possibly be in.
Can you tell us a bit about your hockey journey - how you got to where you were on draft day and what comes next for Jack Ryan?
My hockey journey started when I was 4 years old, I played in the Timbits league. I played in this for about 2 years until I played MD for the Peterborough Panthers which lasted for 2 years. In the following years I played aaa for the Minor Petes from novice-Minor peewee. I played every position except for goalie. Looking back this probably helped in my development. In Peewee and Minor Bantam, I decided to play AA and that’s when I was given a lot of opportunities to be a leader and we had a lot of success as a team. In Bantam I went back to AAA and started putting in more time training and shooting and going to extra skating sessions in the mornings. I was making an impact on the team and knew that I needed to continue to develop and grow in Minor Midget. The summer between Bantam and Minor Midget I had a personal trainer and didn’t play any summer sports so I could focus specifically on training for hockey. It definitely paid off as I led the team in points in the regular season and playoffs. After the season the draft came and that’s when I heard my name and I realized that all the work had
paid off - I had accomplished my goal. What comes next for me is to make the Soo Greyhounds line up and show them that I deserve to be there and prove that I am a valuable hockey player and team mate.
Congratulations also to former minor Pete, Jackson Stewart, selected in the 4th round by the Kingston Frontenacs.