Caught up with Dennis Robertson in between the first and second period of Friday’s game between the Checkers and Rampage.
The 6-foot-1-inch, 215-pound, left-shot defenseman arrived in Charlotte on Thursday night and made it to the Checkers morning skate the following day.
The 22-year-old signed a two-year, entry level-contract with the Hurricanes on Thursday. He was originally drafted in the sixth round of the 2011 NHL draft. Carolina acquired his negotiation rights as part of the John-Michael Liles-Tim Gleanson trade on 1/1/14.
A two-year captain at Brown University, Robertson scored 70 points (17g, 53a) during his four years with the Bears and led the team in power-play goals (5), plus/minus (+11), blocked shots (56) and penalty minutes (78) in his senior season
Q: Have you ever been to Charlotte before?
Robertson: No, I’ve never been. I’m from a very small town in British Columbia (Forth St. John), so this whole area is kind of new to me.
Q: Familiar with anyone already on the Checkers?
Robertson: I’ve played against (Danny) Biega (who played for Harvard). The rest of the guys, I’ve never met any of them, but with hockey being so small and (tight knit), I knew a few guys who knew them. It’s a small world in that way.
Q: How was morning skate?
Robertson: I talked to a couple of the college guys that came in here last year. I mean, it’s just day 1. We just had one skate there and I stayed late with (Hurricanes Director of Defensemen Development) Glen Wesley there doing some extra work and he put me through the ringer a bit, but that’s good.
Q: Has the team given you any idea when you might play and what your role could be?
Robertson: They didn’t mention anything explicitly, you know. They said that I’m here to be a part of the team. They said that I have to be ready to get a chance. They have seven (defensemen) and if they ever put me in the lineup I need to be ready to go. They didn’t try to overwhelm me on my first day with systems and stuff like that. They just wanted to start getting me comfortable and go from there.
Q: Describe your style of play and what you bring to a hockey team.
Robertson: I’m a physical player, a guy that’s going to be solid defensively. I can make some plays coming out of our zone, if I can chip in offensively with a shot of two, that’s great.
*For those interested in such things, Robertson will wear No. 20.