Shane Wright on stare towards Canadiens’ draft table: ‘There was no intent behind that’

Shane Wright pulls on a Kraken jersey after being selected in the first round of the NHL draft by the Seattle Kraken in Montreal on Thursday, July 7, 2022. (Ryan Remiorz/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Shane Wright wanted to clear the air about a potential “staredown” directed at the Montreal Canadiens draft table after getting picked fourth overall by the Seattle Kraken.

The 18-year-old prospect seemingly provided some extra drama on Day 1 of the 2022 NHL Draft when it looked like he was giving the Canadiens a glare while he was up on stage accepting his jersey.

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“Not at all. I was just kind of looking at the cameras in front of me,” Wright explained to Jamie Campbell on Blue Jays Central ahead of a game between the Seattle Mariners and Toronto Blue Jays. “To be honest, I don’t really remember too much going up on stage. It was just kind of a whirlwind for me so. I wasn’t intentionally trying to stare anyone down I guess maybe it looked like that from the video, but there was no intent to stare them down. Just kind of look at the camera and their table was right behind it so I guess it kind of looked like it but there’s no intent behind that.”

Going into the draft, Wright was projected to go first overall to Montreal but the Canadiens instead chosee winger Juraj Slafkovsky, which was as a surprise to many. In his first press conference with reporters Thursday after getting selected by Seattle, Wright made it known that he was going to use the moment as motivation.

“I mean, obviously, you picture that in your mind. You picture your name being called first and walking up to the stage, pulling on that jersey — especially with the draft being in Montreal and them picking first,” Wright admitted, still processing some mixed emotions.

“I’m definitely gonna have a chip on my shoulder from this for sure. Definitely a little more motivation. I’ve always been self-motivated. Always been pushing myself internally, but it’s definitely gonna give me a little more fire, for sure.”

Wright could get his first chance to take on the Canadiens on Dec. 6 when Montreal travels to Seattle then again on Jan. 9 when the Kraken play at the Bell Centre.

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