Zane Gothberg is a good goaltender and a bright kid. He is a draft pick of the Boston Bruins and he is committed to play college hockey at North Dakota. There is one thing about Gothberg that you won’t see when he is stopping slap shots and breakaways, he really gets it.
He understands what it means to be selected in the NHL draft. He understands he will be asked to do more this year with Ryan Massa leaving for Nebraska-Omaha. He really just understands.
I asked him all six of Fargo’s NHL prospect camp attendees what it meant to be part of camp. Most of them gave short, bland, one sentence answers. Not Gothberg.
“To be a part of the Bruins camp meant to be a part of a championship organization. With the best coaching staff, the best equipment and medical staff, and lastly the best players in the game of hockey. They are the Stanley Cup champions and I believe that was attributed to every single person in the organization focusing on the little aspects of their game to contribute the team. And every season it starts by having a successful development camp and just building momentum into the season. It is always a great honor to attend camp and wear the yellow and black big “B” each day. Somewhat like a fairytale when you first put that jersey on and it doesn’t really sink in how incredible it is.”
If you thought that was an intelligent answer, hang around for the rest of them. Gothberg was asked if he had met Spinell before camp. A lot of players just say yes or no. Again, not Gothberg.
“I did not know Spinell personally before the Boston camp and for that matter ever talk before. I have obviously heard about him through some of the older players who played with him and just watching college hockey his name comes up and such.”
He was also willing to give us a bit of an insight into the social side of an NHL prospect camp.
“Camp is definitely a good time to bond with all the guys there, especially players who formerly played for the organization I’m at right now. Whether it was during a van ride to the rink, in the locker room after practice, or doing some paint balling off-ice we certainly had a lot of social time and stuff to talk about and compare. Compare stories such as rookie duties, rookie party, how each season went, the opposing players, and everything in between.”
As much as Gothberg is excited about Boston, and for that matter even North Dakota, which isn’t mentioned here, he is equally as excited about the coming season in Fargo. He was asked what it meant to have two Force representatives at Bruins camp. He answered the question, and then the former Thief River Falls (MN-HS) goalie showed his love for the organization he will play for this fall.
“It means a lot to have two Force guys at just one prospect camp. It’s really impressive because not too many players or free agents make development camps around the league, but to have two guys from the same organization, it just speaks volumes for that program. The Force have given me the opportunity to hone my skills on the ice, but have really given me the tools and pointers so that I can do all these things on my own and be successful. Whether it’s Whitney Baumgartner upstairs teaching me some ways to associate with the media, or Phil Faught in the weight room coaching me on certain lifts, or even Jaime Johnson teaching me about nutrition and my eating habits away from the rink. Those are the things that the Force organization teaches you, and I’m sure Spinell has certainly followed through and learned all of these things during his time here. The Force gives you all the tools you need to be successful and its no wonder why two of the players were attending camp in Boston.”
And there you have it. When you’re watching Gothberg stop pucks on below zero nights in Fargo, you can remember that he is also a well versed, intelligent kid with a bright future.
By: Tim How