Calm, cool, and collected. Those are some of the words that describe United States National Team Development Program Under-18 defenseman Seth Jones.
At least, according to Team USA head coach Danton Cole.
”Jones is a tremendous player,” Cole said. ”He calm things down out there. He knows when to go and he uses his body. He knows when to check and he makes the right reads. On top of that he has great abilities.”
”He’s pretty mature and calm, I don’t want him anymore relaxed.”
Jones describes himself as a mobile defenseman.
“I think I move the puck well, I have some some size, and I skate the puck well too,” said Jones, who is in his second year with the NTDP.
Last year he split the season with the Under-17 and the Under-18 team where he had four goals and 27 assists in 57 games. He was also an underager at the IIHF World Under-18 Championships where Team USA captured gold.
This season he has a goal and nine assists in 22 games against NCAA, USHL, and international competition.
Jones may have another goal in mind.
This summer he took part of the USA World Junior Evaluation Camp in Lake Placid, NY. where he had two assists in games against Sweden and Finland. USA Hockey announces the participants to the winter evaluation camp on Monday, December 5th.
“That would be an honor and a privilege to play and get called up for the World Junior Championship,” he said.
Just having turned 17, he would likely be the youngest member of the team. But age hasn’t stopped him from being a leader on the Under-18 team.
”I do for sure, Jacob Trouba and (I) try to lead the team as best as we can,” Jones stated. “We have always said we have 22 leaders on this team. We pick each other up all the time.”
Jones is one of the few players on the Under-18 team who remains uncommitted for next year. He still deciding on playing NCAA Hockey or sign with the Everett Silvertips of the WHL, who own his major junior rights.
”Both routes, major junior and college are great leagues,” said Jones. “I am trying to keep my doors open right now.”
”I am looking at a numerous amount colleges right now. Without giving specific names, I am trying to narrow my list down as much as I can every week and every day. I am doing some research on each school.”
He doesn’t know when he will make his final decision for next season.
Jones will, however know if he’s made Team USA soon.
“I am not trying to look ahead at the future to be honest with you. I am just worried about my team.”
As calm and cool as always.
Nathan is a beat writer for the Maine Hockey Journal. You can follow him on Twitter.