WILMINGTON — Bruins rookie Tyler Seguin didn’t need to have an All-Star first half to get an opportunity to soak in the All-Star atmosphere. As one of the rookies chosen to be on display in the SuperSkills event Saturday night, the second overall pick got to meet the best players the league has to offer while also getting a read on how hard he can fire a slapshot.
Given that he competed in the Hardest Shot competition, Seguin’s performance was bound to be overshadowed by teammate Zdeno Chara, who once again set a record and won with a 105.9 shot. Yet Seguin impressed, topping out at 97.1 mph, which was third-best on Team Lidstrom (Chara and Alexander Ovechkin finished ahead of him).
Going into the event, it was hard to know what to expect. Seguin, who turned 19 Monday, doesn’t take many slap shots, and based on his style of play, it would appear his skating would probably earn him more attention in a skills competition. Still, Seguin showed that his slapper is one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. He fared better than the other rookie in the competition, as Anaheim’s Cam Fowler topped out at 93.8 mph.
“I was hoping for above 85 [mph], and that I wasn’t going to embarrass myself,” Seguin admitted after Monday’s practice.
Just 85? The rookie ended up shooting it more than 12 mph harder than he had been hoping for, but having never seen the gun taken to his shot, he didn’t know what to expect.
“I had no idea,” Seguin said. “I mean, it was the first time I did it. I was just hoping for over 85, maybe 90, and it worked out well.”
As a whole, Seguin enjoyed the weekend and would be happy if he could make it a yearly occurence.
“You have guys like Ovechkin, [Eric] Staal, [Kris] Letang, top guys. I got to meet them all and hang out,” Seguin said. “It was a good experience.”