Luke Henman was drafted by the Carolina Hurricanes 96th overall in the fourth round of the 2018 NHL draft. The center currently plays for Blainville-Boisbriand in the QMJHL and has 15 points in 17 games for the Armada. Henman is a gifted playmaker with great hockey sense and vision, and he shows it with twelve assists early on in the season. Henman was kind enough to sit down and answer a few of my questions as well as questions from Canes fans in an interview! Thank you to Luke and the Armada organization for granting me this opportunity!
Draft day is always filled with a lot of emotions. Could you describe how you felt before the Hurricanes selected you and what it felt like afterwards?
I was with my family and so it was nice to be there with them. I had a few friends there as well. On Friday we went and watched, and I was able to see some friends get drafted. Not a lot of sleep on Friday night, and we went to the draft on Saturday. It’s nerve wracking because you don’t know when you are going, and you’re constantly checking your phone for updates. After getting selected, it’s a feeling I’ll never forget. You go and do interviews and see the media, and then I see my family once again. It’s unbelievable and then a quick turnaround to prospects camp two days later. It was the best day of my life.
You’ve looked noticeably stronger and quicker this season. Can you describe your mindset heading into the off-season and some goals that you set for yourself?
It’s been a good start to the season, our team is playing really well. It’s no secret that I needed to get stronger, and I still do. I had an early exit to the playoffs, so I had time at home to work out this year, about four months. I knew that it was going to be a big summer for me. I’ve been with the same trainer for a while and was training with some pros. It’s really helpful seeing what they do day in and day out. It really motivates me. I set goals for myself to slowly but surely put on weight, and I put on 12 or 13 pounds. I got faster as well, which has helped me so far this season. I try not to focus on numbers and points, I just strive to play more consistently. I’m a bit of a roller coaster with some good games and bad games throughout, and so I’ve tried to establish consistency this season.
Do you try and model your game after a certain player, or do you try and make your style of play unique? (@sjh0121)
I try to model myself after Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. He’s a two way center that makes plays, and I need to continue working on my two way game in order to make it to the next level. I want to have my coach’s trust to go out in the last minutes of the game and shut opponents down. I think that I can be a similar player because I make plays and strive to be a 200-foot player.
You have a great passing skill. Which current NHL player would you like to see bury one of your passes? (@MaryJanewood199)
Ovechkin would be cool. He gets excited when he scores and an assist on one of the greatest goal scorers in the league’s history would be cool.
Who is your favorite current or all-time Hurricanes player? (@NumberSportsFan)
My favorite current Hurricane is Sebastian Aho. You don’t realize how good he is until you see him in person and see what he does. I love watching him play, it would be really cool to be on the ice with him.
What were some lessons that you took away from your experiences at development camp the second time around?
You feel more comfortable and know what to expect. You know the people, and everyone is so friendly. You have to show your improvement over the past year. They wanted me to get bigger and stronger, and I think I did that. You’re trying to learn as much as you can because there are a lot of great hockey minds there. With all of the players helping you out, it’s easy to soak it in because it clearly worked for them. You know what to expect so there’s not as much of a learning curve. You’re ready to go!
What is the best part about the area you play in? Any favorite destinations?
I think I’m fortunate because it’s 15-20 minutes from Montreal. The best part is the convenience. You can escape when you have days off and go to movies and grab sushi with your teammates. There’s a lot to do and it’s a lovely area. It’s always busy, so you have to make your time count.
Do you have any gameday rituals or superstitions?
I do the same thing for every game day. I’ve played in 165 games or so and I stick with the same routine. I take an ice bath the night before a game. I eat salmon, sweet potatoes and green beans before the game and tape my stick in the same spot. It’s not a superstition, but it’s a routine I’ve built over the past three years. It’s not going to affect how I play, but it’s what I do.
What are some things that you like to do when you’re not playing hockey?
In the summer I love to play golf. I had also played five or six times this season before it got so cold. It’s about to snow here, and that’s not ideal golfing weather. In the summer, train and skate in the morning and then go play a round in the afternoon. You have time off after you practice and so I like to play golf and watch Netflix. You get into a routine during the week, so Tuesdays are typically when I go to the movies.
What’s the latest show you’ve binged?
I just finished the 100 and I’m watching Grey’s Anatomy right now. When you have time off after school and practice, you can fly through those shows.
Do you have any hidden talents or skills that people might not know about?
Nothing jumps out to me. I wish I could sing or play the guitar, but sadly I can’t.
Any updates on your decision for a personal goal song?
I’ve been listening to Post Malone by Sam Feldt a lot recently, and so that’s what I would pick.
I had asked Luke about his goal song during development camp and he was unsure, so I had to be sure to get an update! Thank you once again to Luke and the Armada for the interview! Be sure to catch the Armada as they play the Quebec Remparts on Friday, November 8 at 7 PM eastern.