Cam Atkinson is an exciting player to watch. Size might not be his greatest asset, but what he lacks in that department, he more than compensates for in speed and playmaking ability. Atkinson was the Blue Jackets sixth round draft choice in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. He played three strong seasons for Boston College before signing his first professional contract with the Jackets this spring.
Incorporating our "Job Fair" format, what follows is how Atkinson might answer the questions if I were on one side of the desk and he were on the other.
Standard Cannon Disclaimer: This series will be presented in the form of a mock job interview. The operative word here is mock. We're presenting these from the perspective of the player, as if they were applying for a job with the Jackets. The players themselves aren't involved, so don't contact the team if you disagree with one of their answers! Thirty players will be interviewed, even existing players. We hope you enjoy!
Q) Cam, tell us a little about yourself.
A) I'm a 22 year old right wing. I'm 5'8" and I weigh in around 175 pounds. I'm from Riverside, CT and have been fortunate to play in a well known program at Avon Old Farms School in Avon, CT. Last spring I finished up my collegiate career with Boston College. My season wrapped up with my first professinal action with the Springfield Falcons.
Q) Tell us about some intangibles you could bring to the Blue Jackets.
A) I don't have size as one of my offensive threats, so I have to rely on my speed and my ability to envision the play developing ahead of me. I've been told that I have soft hands and pass the puck with precision. One attribute that my size brings, is the ability to weave and get in places for scoring opportunities where they might not exist for somebody who might be 6'2" or bigger.
Q) What areas of your game do you think you can improve on?
A) As I said, size is never going to be my strongest suit, so I am going to need to continuously work on being faster than my opponents. Moving from college to the AHL for example, I've seen an increase in the speed of the game. It's even faster in the NHL, so in addition to my speed I am going to have to be able to envision where the play is going and continue to be a scoring threat.
Q) Can you give us some examples of your hockey accomplishments?
Playing for Boston College was a tremendous experience for me. The BC Eagles won the Hockey East tournament the past two seasons. In 2010, we won the NCAA championship in the Frozen Four tournament. This past season, I was tied for most goals in the nation and was a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award, college hockey's version of the Heisman Trophy.