Skip to content

Hugh Jessiman: Regrets? He’s had a few

Dec 9, 2012, 2:00 PM EDT

Hugh Jessiman

It’s been a long, strange, and often difficult trip for former 2003 first-round pick Hugh Jessiman.

When the former 12th overall pick finally played in a couple games for the Florida Panthers in 2011, he was the last player from the first round of the 2003 draft to make his NHL debut, just eight years after being picked by the New York Rangers.

Now he’s with the Ottawa Senators organization trying to make things happen in Binghamton. Thinking back on how his pro career started, he says he’d have done things a little differently.

“When you’re young you’re inexperienced. You live and you learn from your mistakes. It sounds cliché but it’s so true,” Jessiman says. “I don’t blame anybody, I always look in the mirror. But, as a veteran now, I try to be the guy to help out the rookies now. I try to be a good guy for us.”

So far this year with the Binghamton Senators, Jessiman has four goals and four assists in 20 games. The night I saw him was a three-point effort (1g, 2a) in a 6-1 win over Portland.

He says if he had a chance to do his time at Dartmouth all over again, he would’ve thought a bit more about when to go pro.

“I think if I were to do that decision again, I would’ve stayed. I came off an injury and turned pro. I don’t know what the thinking was behind that. Obviously there was a lot of pressure from New York. A lot of pressure. You want to make the organization happy. I think coming off an injury and  not giving myself enough time, I think that’s something I would do over.”

That injury held him to just 12 games with one goal and one assist during his junior year at Dartmouth. After that, he decided to turn pro. Was it pressure from the Rangers or from himself that made him jump?

“It was a little bit of both. I think a lot of those guys [in the 2003 draft] left after two years of school. I decided to stay for that third year and really dominate,” Jessiman explains.

“The Parises the Vaneks, they really dominated that second year [of college]. I really wanted to have a year like that and then I go get injured in the fourth game of the year. You’re done. After that, I think at that point it was more pressure from me. So, like I said, it’s no one’s fault. I feel fortunate I got drafted by my home team and now… Here we are.”

He’s still a big guy with a big body, he’s 6’6″ 220 after all, and he hopes that when the lockout ends he’ll get a chance to show he can be a contributor. Now that he’s 28 years-old and with his eighth organization, the time for him to prove himself is right now… If it hasn’t already passed him by.

Latest Posts
  1. Hard-luck Hillen ‘100 percent’ after staph infection

    Sep 16, 2014, 9:22 PM EDT

    hillenhelpedoffgetty Getty Images

    Caps blueliner has had bad luck in the health department.

  2. Forsberg named rookie tourney MVP, Ekblad all-tournament

    Sep 16, 2014, 8:21 PM EDT

    Filip Forsberg Getty Images

    Florida’s youngsters stole the show overall.

  3. Advantage Kuemper? Harding on crutches after ankle injury

    Sep 16, 2014, 7:18 PM EDT

    Josh Harding Josh Harding

    And he’ll reportedly miss part of Minnesota’s training camp.

  4. Sens bringing ex-Devils Mills, Palmieri to camp

    Sep 16, 2014, 7:01 PM EDT

    New Jersey Devils v Boston Bruins New Jersey Devils v Boston Bruins

    The former appeared in three games for Chicago last year; the latter played in Germany.

  5. Ducks score another nice deal, ink Smith-Pelly for two years, $1.6M

    Sep 16, 2014, 4:33 PM EDT

    Phoenix Coyotes v Anaheim Ducks Getty Images

    Just one month after re-signing Jakob Silfverberg on the cheap.

  6. Update: NHL wants to see fine system in action before publicizing diving

    Sep 16, 2014, 4:10 PM EDT

    Bill Daly

    “Fines are meaningful. And I think it has to do with essentially being called out.”

  7. Veteran d-man Clark joins Avs’ staff

    Sep 16, 2014, 3:21 PM EDT

    Clark_Brett

    He’ll be part of the player development department.

  8. Richards: I gave Lombardi ‘my word’ I’d work harder in the offseason

    Sep 16, 2014, 1:40 PM EDT

    2014 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Game Five Getty Images

    Kings forward “didn’t want to become a free agent and leave” L.A.

  9. Blues bringing BizNasty to camp

    Sep 16, 2014, 12:45 PM EDT

    Coyotes Blues Hockey AP

    That’s him getting tossed around by Ryan Reaves.

  10. Daly, Holmgren honored with Lester Patrick Trophy

    Sep 16, 2014, 11:58 AM EDT

    billdalygetty Getty Images

    For “outstanding service to hockey in the United States.”

  11. After trip to neurologist, Clowe on track for training camp

    Sep 16, 2014, 11:45 AM EDT

    NEWARK, NJ - JANUARY 24: Ryane Clowe #29 of the New Jersey Devils takes the puck in the second period against the Washington Capitals at Prudential Center on January 24, 2014 in Newark, New Jersey. Getty Images

    Veteran power forward is trying to return from another concussion.

  12. Hitchcock’s advice to Mueller on making Blues: just play

    Sep 16, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT

    Mathias Seger, Peter Mueller AP

    The recently signed forward hopes to stick with “powerhouse” team.

  13. PHT Morning Skate: When ugly can be a good thing

    Sep 16, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT

    victorgreen

    Tuesday’s collection of links.

  14. B’s Lucic admits his wrist isn’t fully healed

    Sep 16, 2014, 12:45 AM EDT

    Boston Bruins v Detroit Red Wings - Game Three Getty Images

    “It’s turned the corner for the better as far as rehab has gone.”

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. S. Crosby (1350)
  2. S. Bennett (1299)
  3. J. Quick (1260)
  4. P. Rinne (1236)
  5. K. Timonen (1195)