|Desi Burgart with the puck (photo by Surrey Now-Leader)|
Jonathan Singer: First off congratulations. This must have been a nice early Christmas present for you and your family?
Desi Burgart: Definitely for sure. It has been a long time coming and a patient wait for me and my family, but it was nice to finally get something done especially right before the holiday's. It takes a lot of stress off and it made for a great Christmas at home.
Jonathan Singer: Tell us when you first started playing hockey?
Desi Burgart: I was probably five-years-old the first time I ever skated and I started taking skating lessons regularly before I started playing minor hockey. I had a lot of friends from elementary school that already played and it was something I loved watching so I started to play. Kelowna, British Columbia was a great place for me to start to learn and develop at a young age because the competition wasn’t too high and it helped me to really find a passion for the game.
Jonathan Singer: How was your overall recruiting experience? What other schools had interest in you and what factors went into finally deciding that Quinnipiac was the right fit for you?
Desi Burgart: The process was long. I had a good first year with Surrey and started to gain interest from some schools in the Atlantic Hockey Conference and that carried over into this season. I went on a couple visits to two schools in the Atlantic and decided that they weren’t the right fit for me and was really just waiting for that one school to approach that I knew had the whole package. Education has always been a big focal point for me and my family and when a school like Quinnipiac comes knocking it really isn’t a hard decision. Quinnipiac’s track record in hockey is one of the best in the NCAA over the last five years and the campus combined with the high level of education really made it an easy choice.
Jonathan Singer: I heard you committed without a visit to the Qunnipiac campus. Is that correct?
Desi Burgart: Yes that’s correct. The process with Quinnipiac happened quite fast and coach Dumais sent me some clips of the campus and I felt like I got a good enough feel for the campus that taking a visit wasn’t really necessary.
Jonathan Singer: Will you take a visit during your season with Surrey or head to Quinnipiac after your season to get the full experience?
Desi Burgart: I haven’t decided yet. It's getting into crunch time in our league and we are coming down the stretch in a good playoff position so I will have to leave that up to my coach and whether or not he wants me to leave at an important time of the season.
Jonathan Singer: Tell Bobcat Nation what type of player Desi Burgart is on the ice? What are some of your strengths as a player?
Desi Burgart: I’ve always thought of myself as a two-way player who plays the game the right way and do the little things right. Defense has always been a part of my game that I take pride in and I don’t shy away from chipping in offensively. I play a fast pace, physical style of hockey and that fits well with my size. I protect the puck well and I have a good shot and I utilize my teammates well in the offensive zone.
Jonathan Singer: When coach Dumais reached out to you and you eventually committed what role did he envision he has for you on this team next season? One of the things that Quinnipiac has been lacking this season is a natural centers and it looks like you are a natural center that this team desperately needs.
Desi Burgart: We haven’t really talked about it too much, but the one thing in talking to both coach Dumais and coach Pecknold is that they are in need of center depth as you said, and I feel that’s where I will be playing. As for what role I play that will be determined by me and my work ethic coming in at the start. You can never expect anything and everything must be earned and that’s how I anticipate it will be when I come in.
Jonathan Singer: What are some of the areas of your game which you want to improve upon before coming to Quinnipiac?
Desi Burgart: I want to get faster for sure. I'm not a slow skater by any means, but making the jump from junior hockey to college hockey is something that isn’t easy. You go from playing against teenagers to playing against grown men, so speed and strength is something that I will be stressing in the off-season.
Jonathan Singer: Is coming to Quinnipiac over the summer to get a jump start on training something you are considering? Quinnipiac has a tremendous strength coach in Brijesh Patel.
Desi Burgart: Yes for sure. I’ve heard great things about him from coach Dumais and it is definitely something I’m considering doing.
Jonathan Singer: Is there any player that you try to model your game after?
Desi Burgart: TJ Oshie is a player who I’ve always loved watching and I can see some similarities in our games. Obviously he is an incredibly skilled player with tremendous offensively ability but he also is a reliable player in the defensive zone and in any situation, so he’s definitely a player who I look up to and try to play like.
Jonathan Singer: Tell us the type of person that the Quinnipiac University community is going to get in you?
Desi Burgart: I am a very hard worker and a responsible guy. I stray away from stuff that would jeopardize how people view me as a person. I’ve put in a lot of work to achieve this scholarship so maintaining a good public image and continuing to work on and off the ice will be something I will expect out of myself for sure.
Jonathan Singer: What does Desi Burgart like to do off the ice?
Desi Burgart: I grew up in a big golf family so I try to play as much golf as I can in the off-season just to get away from the rink and reset before the next season. My dad has been in the golf business for his whole life and its something that just comes naturally for me and is definitely something I love doing. Other than that I enjoy hanging out with friends and being as social as possible as it keeps me busy.
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