Gibson Comes with American Flair

Saturday, 06.25.2011 / 7:13 PM / News
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Gibson Comes with American Flair
By Aaron Paitich
Special to AnaheimDucks.com

John Gibson shared the last two years of his hockey playing career with the United States National Team Development Program, so it was fitting that he and many of his teammates spent Saturday at Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul, Minn.

“It was a goal of mine to just be the best goalie in the draft for my age, and with that happening it’s quite an honor,” Gibson said. “I’m just really happy that I got into a good organization with the Ducks.”
“It’s cool to see some of the kids from our team go and we’ll probably have quite a few more go today,” Gibson said after being selected in the NHL Entry Draft’s second round (39th overall) by the Ducks on Saturday. “It’s a really cool experience and I’m happy to share it with them.”

The Pittsburgh native joined the U.S. Development Program two years ago, where he was immediately thrown into the fire. The U-17 team plays in the USHL, which can feature much more physically-mature 20-year-old players.

“It was kind of rough to start but obviously with that you really get a lot stronger and you get more experience and I think you mature,” Gibson said.

As a member of this past year’s U-18 team, the competition didn’t get any easier. The U-18 schedule is composed of games against USHL, Division-I college and international teams.

“It really got my feet wet and gave me a good taste for this upcoming season so I feel like I’ll be a step ahead against everyone else,” said Gibson, who will play for the University of Michigan this fall.

Needless to say, the nearly 6-3, 206-pound netminder figured things out. Gibson helped lead Team USA to a gold medal at the Under-18 World Championships in Germany after beating Canada in the semifinals and Sweden in the finals, both in thrilling overtime fashion. With a 2.34 goals-against average and .926 save percentage, he was named the tournament’s Best Goaltender.

When the final Central Scouting rankings were released, Gibson was recognized as the top North American goaltender in this year's draft class.

“They’re a good organization with good young talent," said Gibson of the Ducks. "I’m looking forward to going out there and seeing what happens."
“It was a goal of mine to just be the best goalie in the draft for my age, and with that happening it’s quite an honor,” Gibson said. “I’m just really happy that I got into a good organization with the Ducks.”

Gibson, 17, got into hockey by watching the Pittsburgh Penguins when he was younger. No one in his family played hockey, but his parents were big Penguins fans as well.

“I just went to the games and from there it just kind of got me involved,” said Gibson, who idolized Mario Lemieux as a youngster and today looks up to goaltenders Marc-Andre Fleury and Carey Price.

This East Coast product has never been to Southern California, but he’s looking forward to it.

“They’re a good organization with good young talent. I’m looking forward to going out there and seeing what happens,” said Gibson, who likes fishing and hanging out at the beach.

Gibson gives a lot of credit to his teammates and USA Hockey for his development. No matter what happens in this young athlete’s career, if USA Hockey ever calls, he’ll answer.

“Whenever I get a chance to play for a USA Hockey team, I’ll definitely never turn it down and always go right at it,” Gibson said. “I’m sure that’s the same for anyone on the team. I’m sure we’ll keep in touch over the years because we have a bond that really has been pretty solid over the past two years.”

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Getzlaf 77 31 56 28 87
C. Perry 81 43 39 32 82
N. Bonino 77 22 27 14 49
M. Perreault 69 18 25 13 43
A. Cogliano 82 21 21 13 42
C. Fowler 70 6 30 15 36
K. Palmieri 71 14 17 9 31
D. Winnik 76 6 24 6 30
H. Lindholm 78 6 24 29 30
S. Koivu 65 11 18 3 29
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
F. Andersen 20 5 0 .923 2.29
J. Hiller 29 13 7 .911 2.48

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