Christian: I’m back, once again, for the second installment of Eagles in the NHL (here is installment #1). This edition focuses solely on the blueliners that played for BC in recent years. Enjoy!
Mike Mottau D (1996-2000), New Jersey Devils
Despite limited NHL success, Mottau did the one thing that Gionta couldn't do at BC, and that was win the Hobey Baker Award in 2000 as the nation’s most outstanding collegiate hockey player. He was drafted by the Rangers, but only played 19 games with them before being traded to the Calgary Flames in 2002. Hardly seeing time with the Flames, he spent the next few years bouncing around the AHL. It wasn't until this season did the Devils decide to take a chance on Mottau. They called him up from Lowell and he's played in a career high 57 games this season, tallying 4 G and 12 A. He's certainly seen a lot of ice time this year, and it looks like the former Hobey Baker winner's time in the NHL has finally come.
J.D. Forrest D (2000-2004), San Jose Sharks
Winning a National Championship in your freshman season is certainly a great way to start off your collegiate career. After playing with the Eagles for 4 years and becoming one of BC's top defensemen, Forrest played for two years in Finland before returning to the system that drafted him, the Carolina Hurricanes. He missed all of the 2006-2007 campaign due to injury, but is looking to make an impact this year. He has bounced around Carolina's ECHL and AHL teams this year before being traded this month to the San Jose Sharks for a player to be named later. He played 2 games for their ECHL Elmira Jackals before being called to play for their AHL affiliate, the Worcester Sharks, where he now playing. Now that he's back in the states, hopefully he'll make his move to the NHL before long.
Peter Harrold D (2003-2006), Los Angeles Kings
Harrold was called up from Manchester this year the same day as teammate Brian Boyle (Feb 2nd), but unfortunately only lasted 5 games this season so far before being assigned back to the Monarchs with only 1 NHL assist in those games. Harrold also played 12 games last season for the Kings where he tallied 2 assists.
Andrew Alberts D (2001-2004), Boston Bruins
The Kings aren't the only team to have 3 BC alumni on their roster. Alberts rounds out the Eagle trio, and like Allen, he's currently hurt, but unlike Allen, he's on the injured reserve. Alberts wasted no time in getting to the NHL, playing only 14 games with Providence in the AHL before he played his first game with the Bruins during the 05-06 season. While nothing special in stats (as most defenders aren't), Alberts has played in 70+ games in his first two seasons with the Bruins and also led the team in penalty minutes last season. But that streak looks to come to an end as he remains on the IR due to post-concussion syndrome.
Stephen Gionta D (2002-2006), New Jersey Devils
Brother to Brian on the Devils, Stephen went undrafted but was later signed as a free agent by the Devils. He still has yet to play in any NHL games, but has made a name for himself as the current captain of the Devils' AHL-affiliated team, the Lowell Devils. As a side note, the Gionta brothers aren't the only brothers on the Devils... both Jay Pandolfo and Zach Parise have siblings who also play for the Lowell Devils. This could quite possibly be the first time 3 pairs of brothers have ever been in the same NHL franchise at the same time.
Bonus: Where Will They Be?
Did you know that both Andrew Orpik and Hobey Baker hopeful Nathan Gerbe, current members of the BC team, have been drafted by the Buffalo Sabres? It certainly seems that some systems tend to pick BC players a lot (Carolina, New Jersey, Los Angeles, Buffalo). Do they like the talent BC produces, or is it just a big coincidence?