Islanders forward Daniel Sprong says he learned a lot from the Pittsburgh Penguins’ development camp last month.
The Penguins drafted Sprong in the second round, 46th overall, in 2015 NHL Entry Draft in June.
Hearing his named called was something he said you work hard for, for a long time.
“You just hope to go to a team that really likes you and I’m very happy with Pittsburgh and they were very happy to have to me and hopefully in (main) camp I can show what I can do.”
Just two picks later, Sprong’s linemate Filip Chlapik was selected by the Ottawa Senators.
Sprong said he was very happy for Chlapik.
“We went through a lot together during the year being our draft year and even at the NHL combine. He’s a good friend of mine and he’s my roommate on the road.”
Sprong and other prospects of the Penguins attended the team’s development camp from July 14-18 at the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Penn.
It was a great experience for the Amsterdam, Netherlands native.
“its great being part of that organization and seeing everything there and how many tools you have. They guide you and ask for help. It’s an unbelievable organization and I’m very happy to be a part of it.”
With the Islanders, Sprong is participating in his third QMJHL camp after getting drafted 13th overall in the 2013 QMJHL Entry Draft.
Sprong was amongst the rookies at Pittsburgh’s camp but is now among the veterans at Charlottetown’s camp this summer.
It’s a lot different being a veteran in one league and a rookie in another, said Sprong.
“Now being veteran here, you just try to learn from the veteran guys there.”
The six-foot, 183-pound frame has led the Islanders in scoring for the past two seasons. Last season he had 39 goals and 88 points in 68 games.
Sprong said he wants to be a leader this season.
“It’s my third year here now. I’m going to learn a lot with Pittsburgh from the other guys and hopefully I make it to main camp to see how the best players in the world play and how they lead so I can take it back to Charlottetown”.
“I have no hopes for me this year. I’m just going to play every game and see what happens. I just have to play my game and work hard and things will come.”
Team White 5, Team Black 3
Sprong scored three goals to lead Team White to a 5-3 win over Team Black on Thursday night during the third inter-squad game this week.
The win for Team White wraps up the inter-squad action that will take place through the first week of training camp as the team gets ready for two pre-season games this weekend.
Sprong said everyone played well and are fighting for spots on the team.
“New coach of course. He doesn’t know anyone, even the veterans. We are all battling for a spot and it doesn’t matter how many years you played here.”
Team White struck first with Ian Drysdale putting the puck past Guillaume Briand-Briere.
Sprong scored two-straight goals to give Team White a 3-0 lead.
In the second period, Keith Getson scored on a breakaway to give Team White a 4-0 lead before Chris Chaddock replied for Team Black.
Shawn Boudrias scored for Team White and it was the lone goal of the third period to make it a 4-2 game.
In a five-minute, 3-on-3 period, Sprong scored and highlight reel end-to-end goal to give Team White a 5-2 lead before Mitchell Balmas responded for Team Black.
The Islanders travel to Acadie-Bathurst Friday night for a pre-season battle against the Titan at 7 p.m.
First home pre-season game is Saturday against Saint John in Pownal at 4 p.m.