Saigeon finally gets the call
Patience and persistence finally paid off for Brandon Saigeon.
The 20-year-old Grimsby native was passed over in previous National Hockey League drafts, but finally heard his name called over the weekend when he was selected in the fifth round (140th overall) by the Colorado Avalanche.
“I never had any doubts,” Saigeon said. “It’s been special to celebrate with my friends and family and this is just the beginning.
“It was a good feeling. It’s just another step in the right direction and I’m looking forward to the opportunity.”
Saigeon wasn’t quite sure to expect this time around, but he made sure to be watching the draft just in case.
“I was at home. I heard it and got a call from my agent and I was really excited to share that moment with my family,” he said. “It was kind of up in the air. I wasn’t too sure what was involved.”
Saigeon was ranked 147th among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting. He was the fourth overall pick in the OHL Priority Draft by the Belleville Bulls, but was never a top-line player in the OHL until this past season when he posted 70 points in 65 game, as well as 25 points in 21 playoff games with the OHL champion Hamilton Bulldogs.
Saigeon kept refining his game until the scouts finally took notice.
“That’s a big factor,” he said. “It’s a big dream and it would have been easy to feel bad for yourself. I just worked hard and got myself where I needed to be.
“I give a lot of credit to my teammates. They helped me out a lot.”
It also didn’t hurt the Bulldogs had memorable season, which included an appearance at the Memorial Cup.
“It was nice to go far and that was a lot of help. I’m thankful to my teammates and coaches. It was a professional group and a lot of guys are going to be moving on to the pro level.”
Saigeon, who is eligible to play in the American Hockey League with the Colorado Eagles next season, has been in contact with the Avs.
“I had a few talks and they said they were impressed with me and it was a special feeling for sure,” he said.
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