A week spent in Massachusetts — mostly at the Boston Bruins’ Third Annual Development Camp at Ristuccia Arena in Wilmington, Mass. — isn’t the only traveling goaltender Michael Hutchinson will be doing this summer.
The Bruins’ third-round pick (77th overall) in 2008 was recently traded by the Barrie Colts to Ontario Hockey League perennial contender London, which is run by former NHL brothers Dale and Mark Hunter.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Hutchinson told TheBruinsBlog.net after a practice session at the development camp this week. “London’s one of the best organizations you can go to. So when you get an opportunity to go to a place like that, you have to be thankful for it.”
The 19-year-old Hutchinson had been living at home while playing for the Colts the last three seasons. So now he’ll move about two and a half hours away and live with a billet family for the first time. Joining the Knights should help further his maturation both on and off the ice.
The 2008-09 season didn’t go exactly as Hutchinson had hoped. After taking the reins as the Colts’ No. 1 netminder late in ’07-08 and leading his club to an upset of Brampton in the first round of the OHL playoffs, Hutchinson figured he’d be the go-to guy last season. But he was back to splitting time, this time with Peter DiSalvo, and played in just 38 games (six more than the year before). In compiling a 15-20-1 record with a 3.02 goals-against average and five shutouts, however, Hutchinson still managed pull positives from the season (which featured a seventh-place finish by the Colts).
“It was a little bit tougher not getting as much playing time as you would like. But I think it was more a learning experience year and I was put in some situations I wasn’t used to being put into before, so it was great to get that experience and learn from it,” he said.
At 6-foot-3, Hutchinson has learned to use his size well. And his fundamentals are sound. All he needs now is a big year in London and then a contract from the Bruins. Then he can move closer to Boston’s goaltending conversation for the near future.