Monday, November 16, 2009

William Wrenn Interviewed By San Jose Blog

(above) Fear The Fin blog in San Jose interviewed DU defenseman William Wrenn

From: Fear The Fin Blog

Fear The Fin: Growing up in Alaska, did you play a lot of outdoor hockey, or was more of an emphasis placed on the indoor rinks?

William Wrenn: When I was a kid we would have practice outside every once in a while. When I left for LA my freshman year my Dad built a rink in our backyard, so I'd come home from school every day and do my homework and then skate until dinner, and sometimes we'd even go back out there again at night. I skated outside a lot, actually.

Fear The Fin: You mentioned your dad. Some players say their biggest influence was their parents-- others say a specific coach, or the competition amongst their peers. Who was your biggest influence and why?

William Wrenn: I'd probably say my dad, because he always supported me no matter what I wanted to do. He doesn't know very much about hockey as I'm the only person in my family so far with any kind of a hockey background. Seeing the time that he would put into the outdoor rink, he'd be out there hours trying to build it and get the ice ready, I really looked up to that and I took advantage of the fact that he worked so hard on it. I try to make him proud.

Fear The Fin: Like you said earlier, you moved to Los Angeles at the age of 14 to play for the Los Angeles Selects. What were the reasons behind this?

William Wrenn: High school hockey in Alaska was slowly starting to go downhill, and kids were leaving at an earlier age. I came up with the opportunity, and every kid always wonders what LA is like, especially being from Alaska. I figured I'd give it a shot, and of course it was a great program and we were going to have a really good team. It wasn't that hard of a decision, the only hard part was having to leaving my family and friends. I knew that they'd still be there for me whenever though.

Fear The Fin:Many projected you to be selected in the third to fifth round of the NHL draft, but you were taken by the San Jose Sharks 43rd overall. Did you know that the Sharks were interested in you? Why do think you were drafted so early?

William Wrenn: I think that my playing style might fit the team and they liked what they saw and what I could become in the future. I really had no idea where I would be drafted. At the combine, my interview with the Sharks was actually, what I thought, one of my worst ones. They drilled me with my flaws and then asked me some tough questions about my skating and my style of play. I really had no idea that they were going to be the team that drafted me.

Fear The Fin: Do you remember what any of those questions were?

William Wrenn: Things like, "You're not the best skater, how do you think you're going to make it in the NHL?". Stuff like that, what they thought I could improve on, and if I thought I was good enough to to make it eventually. They picked apart my game. Other interviews were more generic, they didn't really point out any flaws or anything that I really struggled with. I didn't think it went that well, but obviously they really liked me.

Fear The Fin:Since being drafted by the Sharks, what have they asked you to improve on?

William Wrenn: Skating. Skating was a big part. They think my skating can be a little bit better. You can always become faster, especially with the game and how it is today. They definitely emphasized that I really need to keep working on my skating and not give up on that.

Fear The Fin:A few weeks ago, you played the University of Minnesota, a team that features fellow Sharks prospect Patrick White. Do you ever think about the fact that the players in your league could be your eventual teammate in the AHL or NHL?

William Wrenn: Not really. I guess I don't look too much into that because I'm focused on our team and what we can do. We're a team with really high expectations, so I'm really worried about that right now (laughs).

Fear The Fin: What's the biggest difference between the college game and the junior game? What was the hardest part about making that transition?

William Wrenn: It's definitely faster. You don't have nearly as much time to make decisions with the puck and you have to get stronger. A lot stronger than you have to be in juniors. You have to be prepared to play every night, you can't take a night off, you have to be ready to go at any point in the game.

Fear The Fin: You captained the US Under-18 team to a 2009 World Championship gold medal in your second year in the National Team Development Program. What was that experience like for you? Do you see yourself being a leader throughout your career?

William Wrenn: I've always prided myself on being a leader. I'm not the most vocal guy but I try really hard and try to lead by example. My experience with that was unbelievable, I loved every part of it. My friends that I got with that team, I'll always be really good friends with them. The road that we took and how hard it was, that was great. I really enjoyed it.

Fear The Fin: What have you been working on this year to improve that?

William Wrenn: Again, skating. They gave me some drills so that I could be faster with the puck if I want to rush up into the play or follow the play up. I'll also go out before practice and work on my shot. I'm also just concentrating when I'm out on the power play to make the right decisions and make good plays.

Fear The Fin: Do you see yourself as a power play defenseman going forward?

William Wrenn: I think it's a definite possibility. If I don't, that's fine. Whatever team I end up on or wherever I'm at, it's whatever that team needs to make them the best that they can be. Wherever they need me.

Fear The Fin: Favorite thing to do in Denver.

William Wrenn: Hang out with the boys from the team.

Fear The Fin: Will we see the Pioneers in the Frozen Four?

William Wrenn: Oh, man... yes (laughs). Tough question, but I'm not gonna say no (laughs). Yeah. Potentially, yes.

Fear The Fin: Thanks so much for speaking with us, Will. When is your next game?

William Wrenn: Next weekend against North Dakota.

Fear The Fin: How are you preparing for that? How do they look?

William Wrenn: They're good, hard hard practices this week. We have an off weekend this weekend this weekend so practices have been real tough. Just getting prepared for them.

1 comment:

puck swami said...

Wrenn is going to be a very good Pioneer. Right now, his reading/reacting/decision- making skills as well as his skating are the areas I think he needs to improve most.