Jack Hughes On WFAN: Intense Devils-Rangers Rivalry Would Be 'A Lot Of Fun'

Boomer and Gio
June 24, 2019 - 9:58 am
Gregg Giannotti and Jerry Recco pose with Jack Hughes of the New Jersey Devils on June 24, 2019.



Jack Hughes, the top pick in the NHL draft Friday by the Devils, doesn't believe there's truly a rivalry between him and No.2 pick Kaapo Kakko of the Rangers, but he also knows that could change in an instant.

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"Obviously it's really unique to have the first and second pick in the same area, me with the Devils and him with the Rangers. So I think that's pretty unique in itself," Hughes told WFAN's "Boomer and Gio" show Monday. "But for me, I don't think it's much of a rivalry, obviously. The media will make it out to be, and I'm sure over the next couple of years, it'll intensify a little bit with the Devils and Rangers trying to heat up and get really good teams here certainly. That would be a lot of fun if a Devil-Ranger rivalry was kind of heated up again."

In the meantime, the 18-year-old center said he's trying to embrace the spotlight.

"I think for me I'm kind of living out a dream so far," he said. "I mean, what else do you want? You get drafted by an NHL team, you're kind of living the good life. So, I mean for me, it's all awesome. I think I'm a confident kid, and I'm trying to enjoy this and enjoy every moment with it."

Hughes said he didn't know he'd be a Devil until Martin Brodeur announced his name on stage in Vancouver. 

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"Once they called my name, I was so happy and so pumped up to be a Devil," he said. 

"I think so many emotions fall into that moment. You're so fired up, and once you hear your name called, you're just really excited to go to the organization."

He added that he likes what he sees from his new team. 

"I know it's a really exciting group, and it's a team that's right on the brink, I think," he said. 

Hughes has prided himself on being a leader on the ice. But that could be more challenging as a teenager in the NHL. He said he'll seek a proper balance. 

"I think in scenarios, for sure," he said of being vocal. "But I'm going to be an 18-year-old. I don't want to step on anyone's toes. But I mean, I'm a confident kid. I want to be a kid that kind of drives the bus, doesn't just be a passenger."

To listen to the interview, click on the audio player above.