Brian Dumoulin had yet to play a pro hockey game when he got a call from an NHL Hall of Famer over the summer.
It was Ron Francis, vice president of hockey operations for the Carolina Hurricanes – the organization that signed Dumoulin to a three-year entry level contract months earlier.
That's how Dumoulin, who was Carolina's second round pick in 2009, learned he had been sent to Pittsburgh as part of the Jordan Staal trade.
"(Francis) gave me a call, said they loved having me in their organization and good luck in Pittsburgh," Dumoulin said.
It was a major moment for the young defenseman, who just left Boston College after three seasons.
All of a sudden, Dumoulin found himself linked to one of the biggest trades in the offseason, and in Pittsburgh history.
Considering he has yet to play a pro game, Dumoulin has been taking the busy offseason in stride.
In fact, he's been handling it like a pro.
"It's nice to know that Pittsburgh wanted me included in the trade, but right now it means nothing until I come here and prove myself," he said. "Being involved in the Staal trade doesn't really matter to me. All I care about is Pittsburgh now."
Dumoulin comes from a Boston College program that won two national championships during his three seasons. The 6-3, 200-pound blueliner was the team's top-scoring defenseman the last two seasons, but Dumoulin pointed out that his college achievements don't automatically translate to success as a pro.
"Here, it's a different team, different surroundings and a different game," Dumoulin said. "It's nice to have the winning in my background and know what it takes to play in big games, but as a pro I'm still going to have to adapt."
Dumoulin found out just how quickly he would have to adapt to the pro game when he was included in the Staal trade this summer.
His lack of pro experience made it less difficult to leave the Hurricanes organization and start new, however.
"The trade probably wasn't as hard as it would've been had it happened during the season when you've been with a team for most of the year," Dumoulin said. "I wasn't all that familiar with the Hurricanes organization and I was able to spend some time in Pittsburgh this summer, which made it easier."
Now comes the hard part – carving out a spot in an organization loaded with defensive depth.
But Dumoulin is taking the same approach to that challenge as he did with the Staal trade.
"It's nice to be surrounded by so many good players who will push me and make me better," Dumoulin said. "I'm here to prove myself and be an asset to the organization."