(WPRI) — He’s been wearing the red-white and blue for the past two years, skating with the U.S. National Team development program. On Wednesday, Brett Berard found out those colors could follow him to the pro’s. The former Hendricken hawk picked in the fifth round by the New York Rangers.
“I didn’t get any phone calls before I got picked, so I just jaw it on the TV with my mom and Dad and shortly after the GM of the Rangers Jeff Gorton followed with a phone call by David Quin. So I had two nice conversations with him so it was pretty awesome,” Berard said.
The Providence College freshman had one night to celebrate. On Thursday morning, he was off to Michigan to compete for a spot on team USA’s world junior championship team. Berard ran into a lot of familiar faces, including his the team’s head coach, Friar boss Nate Leaman.
“It’s obviously a huge help, there’s a lotta former NTDP guys here so knowing them coming in is kind of a big help to already fit in, and know who everyone is. It’s pretty cool that he’s here and trying to make this team too, just do what I’ve done at providence, knows what I’m about, play my game up here, and hopefully it all works out for the best,” Berard said.
It’s been a goal of his to compete for a medal for his country since he started to skate.
“Yeah it would mean a whole lot, it’s been a family tradition watching this tournament over Christmas and new years and it would be pretty cool to finally be on this team, I’m here now so try and make the best out of it,” Berard said.