A Sit-Down Interview: The Road to the Dream
Jake Bean, an Edge Student since grade 8, currently playing for the Calgary Hitmen, is ranked 16th by International Scouting Services ahead of the 2016 NHL Draft. He took the time to answer a few questions before the Draft.
I don’t really have a specific quote; I think the best approach is to be a good person.
Favourite sport outside hockey:
Right now it would be golf, I started playing over 10 years ago. I played basketball growing up and around my second year peewee, I shifted my focus to be more hockey specific.
Other athletes you like to watch & follow:
I’m friends with Joe Colborne (Edge Alumni and member of the Calgary Flames); I like to see what he does. Also, Jaret Anderson-Dolan, he helped me out when we were younger. (Jaret Anderson-Dolan joined Edge School for his grade 6 year and recently finished his first year in the WHL with the Spokane Chiefs where he was named Chiefs’ Rookie of the Year). Now that I have experience in the WHL, I am providing help to others like Jaret helped me.
Who do you pattern your game off of?
Cam Fowler of the Anaheim Ducks or Duncan Keith of the Chicago Blackhawks.
Who influenced you to play hockey?
My parents are the main influence, they placed me in hockey and I fell in love with the game.
Do you have a pregame routine?
I would say it is more about staying light all day. Not taking things too seriously, focusing on other things beside the game and then when the game comes, focusing in.
What is on your iPod?
A little bit of everything, mostly Country right now.
How do you balance school and hockey?
I think we are fortunate at Edge to have really great teachers; communication with the teachers is the biggest thing. Although I’m busy with hockey there is enough free time in my day to get schoolwork done when it needs to be done.
Who has supported you during your career?
I’m definitely fortunate to have the people who I have in my life. I think it starts with my family and close friends and stretches out from there. Staying home while playing in the WHL is an advantage, getting home cooked meals and greater guidance from my parents. Living at home with family and have their values all around you helps.
I have also had really great coaches and trainers throughout my entire career, especially at Edge, that was a huge part of my development. My teachers at Edge have also been very supportive, they understand what we as student-athletes are going through and what we need.
Do you have any advice for Bantam players missed in the WHL Draft?
The biggest thing would be that you are not any better or any worse than you were the day before or after the Draft happened. If you don’t get drafted it really doesn’t mean anything, in some aspects it is probably an advantage not to get drafted, as it allows for more choice in terms of where you are able to go.
Any difference for those taken in the Draft?
Congratulations to those guys who were selected, they obviously earned it. Try to have fun, that is the biggest thing, and enjoy the moment. Keep working hard and advancing though the levels.
How was your experience playing at Edge? Do you have a favourite memory?
Playing at Edge was a really big opportunity for me both as a player and a person. My years at Edge were the biggest years as far as developing my game and advancing to the next level. I was exposed to ice-time in key situations, really great coaches and trainers, and got to compete against some of the best players in my age group.
My favourite memory from my time playing at Edge was winning the San Jose tournament. From the November 2012 Edge Newsletter “The next goal wasn’t scored until the opening minute of the third period when Jake Bean one timed a Connor Beebe pass over the shoulder of San Jose netminder Jake Acton.”
What was the biggest challenge transitioning from Elite 15’s to the WHL?
The hardest thing was the style of play. In some ways it isn’t that different but in some ways it is a lot different. The hardest thing was to find my game within the WHL game, it is inevitable that it is going to happen but it does take a few games. As a 16 year old, coaches might not have as much confidence in you, regardless of who you are and once you are able to demonstrate your skills to the coaching staff, everything rolls out a little bit easier from there.
How do you deal with the pressure and expectations of the upcoming Draft?
The only way you can really deal with it is just to enjoy it. To understand and to put it in perspective, knowing that not every 17 year old is going to get the opportunity to experience what I’m going through, take it in stride and enjoy the process. I try not to follow the media, obviously I do see some of the stories, but at this point you really don’t know. It’s more about sticking with my day to day routine and trusting that everything will work out.