PENTICTON, BC – Sitting in the Edmonton Oilers dressing room at the Young Stars Classic Oil Kings Davis Koch is calm, cool and collected.
Although this is his first experience at an NHL Rookie Camp, Koch got his first opportunity to put his skills on display for the Edmonton Oilers organization at the team’s Development Camp in Jasper earlier in the summer.
“I have a sense of familiarity now,” said Koch. “Getting familiar with the system and how everything works. Being comfortable in this environment is a big thing.”
The Oil Kings right-winger is composed both on and off the ice. Ahead of the upcoming season he hopes to take on more of a leadership role.
“This upcoming season I want to lead by example,” said Koch. “I want to be more consistent and try my best every night I hit the ice. I think at games and practices I need to be more vocal.”
Last season, Koch lead the Oil Kings in on-ice performance, finishing first on the team with 70 points (21 goals, 49 assists). In addition to his mesmerizing play, Koch was awarded the Oil Kings Top Scorer Award, Kristans Pelss Award and MVP Award at the team’s annual Oil Kings Awards presentation. Coming into his second go-around with the Oilers organization, Koch recognizes the importance of his chance to participate in the Oilers Rookie Camp.
“This is an opportunity to see how I matchup against all these elite players,” said Koch. “I think coming here and seeing where I matchup is a good measuring stick moving forward. It allows me to look at my game and see where I can improve.”
On Friday afternoon the Oilers rookies played their first game of the tournament where Koch picked up two assists on the night to help lead the team to a 4-2 victory over the Calgary Flames rookies. His success continued as he picked up another assist on Saturday night against the Jets rookies.
“I think coming here and seeing where I matchup is a good measuring stick moving forward. It allows me to look at my game and see where I can improve.”
Koch believes it is the turn-around in his game last season that has helped him gain invaluable experiences like this one.
“Coming into last season I had a confidence and attitude change,” said Koch. “I looked at things a lot differently and it helped me a lot throughout the season. I think it was that shift that has allowed me to get opportunities like this. It’s nice to see a good season pay off.”
As Koch heads into the upcoming season there is no doubt that these notable experiences will truly help him solidify a leadership role in the Oil Kings dressing room.