- James Murphy, Bruins reporter, ESPNBoston.com
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WILMINGTON, Mass. -- When Seth Griffith saw the Bruins trade Benoit Pouliot for a fifth-round pick and the rights to Michel Ouellet at the 2012 NHL entry draft last weekend, he had an inkling they did it to draft him.
The 131st overall pick was right.
"I had a good feeling going into the draft that the Bruins might draft me and when I saw them trade for that pick, I was really hoping that was why," Griffith recalled. "I was so happy they did and I am really excited to be here."
The London Knights star lit up the OHL with 45 goals and 85 points last season and helped them to the Memorial Cup finals with 10 goals and 23 points in the playoffs.
Griffith has heard a lot about the Bruins organization while playing with Bruins prospect Jared Knight for the past two years. Knight was drafted by the Bruins in the second round (32nd overall) of the 2010 entry draft.
"Well Jared Knight has really sold me on this team and this camp and just the culture," Griffith said. "I'm seeing now exactly what he was talking about. From the players to the trainers to the coaches and to Johnny Whitesides it's just a really well-run camp. They make you feel at home and part of a group but they also challenge you. And to be part of such a prestigious Original Six organization is great."
The Bruins are absolutely thrilled to have been able to get such a skilled and high-scoring player in the fifth round and are just as happy to have Griffith at their 2012 Development Camp.
"We look at it and say, well maybe we should have drafted him last year if he was going to go and have that many goals," said Bruins assistant general manager Don Sweeney, who has run the development camp since its inception in 2007. "Obviously you look and say, 'OK, he's a year older, he should have put up those goals.' So there's always a dynamic you're trying to balance with. Is he going to go get this many? Or he might not get bigger or is he going to get faster? Or, he already shoots the puck great, so is that shot good enough at the NHL level?
Sweeney then when on to compare Griffith to future hall of famer Ray Whitney, who will be one of the most sought-after unrestricted free agents when free agency opens Sunday.
"Ray Whitney's had a very successful career," Sweeney said. "I think [Griffith] has a little bit of blend of those talents, and those types of goals at the OHL level I think speak volumes for that type of player that he is. Hopefully he can go and do that as he moves forward to play against stronger players. We like him; we like the player; and we didn't necessarily know for sure whether or not he'd be there, but we're happy that he was when he was."
But right now, Griffith isn't looking too far ahead. He's enjoying camp and hoping he gets to strut his skills with a player like Bruins winger Milan Lucic at some point.
"I think I'd love to play with Milan Lucic and I guess that's because I tend to play a lot like David Krejci's style," Griffith said. "I like to shoot and score goals or create plays with space and to have a guy like Lucic doing that for you must be great. That's my goal right now, to keep showing them I am ready to make it to the NHL."