This Friday marks the 2nd Annual Comm Ave Charity Classic, which will be held at BU's Walter Brown Arena at 7 PM. The event benefits Compassionate Care ALS and The Travis Roy Foundation. If you haven't bought your tickets yet what are you doing go buy tickets now.
Last year BC's alumni team lost to BU's alumni team by a score of 7-5, but more importantly the event raised over $55,000 for Compassionate Care ALS. This year we're hoping to see a BC win and an even greater amount of money raised!
To get everyone excited for the game we put together a totally fair an unbiased look at the roster for this year's event.
Parker Milner (BC '13, ECHL/AHL): Milner spent most of his season in the ECHL with the Missouri Mavericks, where he recorded a .925 save percentage in 25 games and had a 2.17 GAA. He also played in 3 playoff games for the Mavs, where he put up a .920 save percentage. In his 6 AHL games last season, Milner had a .906 save percentage and a 3.05 GAA.
John Muse (BC '12, ECHL/AHL): Muse started last season with the Texas Stars before being traded to the Charlotte Checkers. His numbers improved with the Checkers, where he played in 1 less game but got more minutes of playing time. He had a combined .911 save percentage and 2.55 GAA.
Matt O'Connor (BU '15, AHL/AHL):
Who wins? BC. Not only does BC have two goalies on the roster, but they both have better AHL numbers than O'Connor does. O'Connor had a 3.31 GAA and .895 save percentage in the AHL last season. Milner's numbers do come from the ECHL and from slightly fewer games, but Muse was in the AHL and played 3 more games than O'Connor.
Brian Dumoulin (BC '12, AHL/NHL): Dumoulin was an important defensive player for the Stanley Cup winning Penguins during his first full NHL season. He also scored 2 playoff goals and kept his penalty minutes to a minimum throughout the season.
Noah Hanifin (BC '15, NHL): After one season at BC, Hanifin joined the Carolina Hurricanes. He recorded 22 points in 79 games and had a -14. In general, his poise impressed fans who thought he might not have been mature enough to go pro.
Brian Leetch (BC '87, NHL): Leetch spent one year at BC before going pro, and he spent his entire career in the NHL. Leetch retired in 2006 with the Bruins. He had an impressive final season, playing in 61 games and recording 32 points. Leetch has won the Stanley Cup, the Conn Smythe, the Calder, the Norris trophy twice, and is widely considered to be one of the best New York Rangers players of all time.
Mike Mottau (BC '00, NHL/AHL): Mottau, who won the Hobey Baker while at BC, split his career between the AHL and the NHL, and spent his final season with San Antonio (AHL) and the Panthers. He retired in 2014 after playing 29 games for San Antonio and 8 for Florida. During his last full NHL season in 2009-10 he recorded 18 points for the Devils.
Adam Clendening (BU '12, AHL/NHL): Clendening spent the past season splitting time between the NHL and AHL Penguins and then playing 20 games for the Edmonton Oilers. He recorded a +3 with the Oilers and scored 1 goal. Clendening played two full seasons with the Rockford Ice Hogs after graduating from BU and has bounced around from team to team since them.
Colby Cohen (BU '10, AHL/ECHL/Europe): Cohen last played during the 2014-15 season, which he split between the Nottingham Panthers (EIHL), the Reading Royals (ECHL), and Banska Bystrica HC 05 (Slovak). Cohen recorded 9 assists in 15 games in Slovakia and scored 2 goals in 12 games for Nottingham.
Matt Grzelcyk (BU '16): Grzelcyk was drafted by the Bruins in 2012 at #85. During his final season with the Terriers he scored 10 goals and had a +17. He had a better season as a junior, but having Jack Eichel on your team will do that to your stats.
Tom Poti (BU '98, NHL/AHL): Poti spent his entire pro career in the NHL with the exception of 2 AHL games during his final season. He retired in 2012-13 after having a few seasons shortened by injuries. During his last full season in 2009-10, Poti recorded 24 points in 70 games.
Brian Strait (BU '09, AHL/NHL): Strait played 52 games for the New York Islanders last season and recorded 6 points. The previous season, he recorded 7 points in 52 games for the Islanders. Strait recorded only 31 penalty minutes last season, a huge decrease from the 73 PIM he recorded during his first season in the AHL.
Sean Sullivan (BU '07, AHL/CHL/Europe): Sullivan spent last season with the Hamburg Freezers, where he scored 5 goals and recorded a -8. His last season in the NHL was 2012-13, during which he recorded 7 points, 13 penalty minutes, and a -9.
Who wins? It's a toss up. BU has 6 defenders to BC's 4, but BC has 4 of the top defensive players to ever play for the Eagles. Two of BC's 4 defenders, while stellar players, have been retired for a few years, but the other two are young defensive leaders on their NHL teams. Here it probably comes down to stamina, what shape the older players on both teams are in, and how comfortable Grzelcyk is playing against some pretty terrific NHLers.
Bill Arnold (BC '14, AHL/NHL): Arnold played his first pro game in the NHL, but has been in the AHL since then. he's dealt with some injuries since graduating, but still managed to record 22 points last season.
Patrick Brown (BC '14, AHL/NHL): Brown has played in 7 NHL games in both of his professional hockey seasons. He scored his first NHL goal last season, as well as recording his first NHL assist. Brown recorded 25 points for the Charlotte Checkers in 2015-16 and stepped into a leadership role on the team.
Paul Carey ( BC '12, AHL/NHL): Carey scored 13 goals and recorded 18 assists for the Hershey Bears last season before an injury ended his season. He also played 4 games for the Washington Caps, during which his scored his first NHL goal.
Johnny Gaudreau (BC '13, NHL): Johnny. Gaudreau. is. really. good. at. hockey. If. you. didn't. know. this. you. wouldn't. be. reading. this. article.
Steven Gionta (BC '06, AHL/NHL): Gionta has spent his entire career in the Devils organization. Last season he scored 1 goal and recorded 7 assists. Since becoming a full-time NHLer his stats have stayed consistent.
Jimmy Hayes (BC '11, AHL/NHL): Hayes has spent the past two seasons as a full-time NHL player. He spent last season with the Boston Bruins. He didn't live up to the expectations of many Bruins fans and recorded a -12, but he did manage to score 13 goals and record 16 assists for Boston. He also scored a hat trick against Ottawa last season.
Kevin Hayes (BC '14, NHL): Kevin Hayes had a slightly less productive year last season than he did in his first NHL season, but he still managed to score 14 goals and earn 22 assists for the Rangers. He has played in 79 regular season games during both of his professional seasons.
Ben Smith (BC '10, AHL/NHL): Smith spent the beginning of the season recovering from a concussion and then split time between the San Jose Sharks and Barracuda and the Toronto Maple Leafs and Marlies. He scored 2 goals for the Leafs, 12 regular season AHL goals, and 2 post-season AHL goals.
Dave Spina (BC '05, AHL/ECHL/Europe): Spina spent this past season with TPS Turku in Finland. He played in 52 games and scored 16 goals. Spina's numbers have been fairly consistent throughout his career, and he seems to still be going strong in the Finnish league.
Steve Whitney (BC '13, AHL/ECHL): Whitney spent last season with the Norfolk Admirals (ECHL) and had his best season yet. He scored 23 goals and picked up 32 assists, registering 55 points in 66 games.
Nick Bonino (BU '10, AHL/NHL): Nick Bonino played for the Stanley Cup winning Pittsburgh Penguins last season and scored 4 playoff goals for them. But he probably couldn't have accomplished everything he did without his wonderful teammate, Brian Dumoulin, right?
Charlie Coyle (BU '12, AHL/NHL): I'm not saying that I kind of like Charlie Coyle because the BU fans are a little salty about how he pulled a Jeremy Bracco and basically just peaced out one day, but I'm not NOT saying that. Coyle has had a successful career with the Minnesota Wild since leaving BU. He had his best offensive season yet in 2015-16, recording 21 assists and scoring 21 goals. He also scored 1 playoff goal for the Wild last season.
Chris Higgins (BU '09, AHL/ECHL/Europe): Higgins has spent the past 3 years in the EIHL, most recently in Belfast. He scored 12 goals and recorded 87 penalty minutes this past season.
Peter MacArthur (BU '08, AHL/ECHL/Europe): MacArthur spent last season in Austria and with the Adirondack Thunder (ECHL). He scored 8 goals and picked up 28 assists for the Thunder, and recorded 7 points in 26 games while in Austria.
John McCarthy (BU '09, AHL/NHL): McCarthy spent most of last season with the San Jose Barracuda, but did play one game for the Sharks. McCarthy had his second best pro season, scoring 16 goals and recording 45 points.
Shawn McEachern (BU '91, AHL/NHL/Europe): McEachern spent most of his career in the NHL. He played for Pittsburgh, Boston, Ottawa, and Atlanta over the years. McEachern played his last professional season in 2005-06, during which he split time between the Boston and Providence Bruins. He only recorded 4 goals in his final pro season, but he scored 20+ goals in each of his 3 seasons at BU.
Danny O’Regan (BU '16): O'Regan is a San Jose Sharks draft pick - he was drafted #138 overall in 2012. In his final year at BU he scored 17 goals and picked up 27 assists.
Jay Pandolfo (BU '96, AHL/NHL/Europe): Pandolfo spent the majority of his career with the New Jersey Devils, but also played for the Islanders and the Bruins. Pandolfo finished his career by playing 18 games for the Bruins during the 2012-13 season. While at BU he had a standout senior season in which he recorded 67 points.
Evan Rodrigues (BU '15, AHL/NHL): Rodrigues split his first professional season between the AHL and the NHL. He played 72 games for the Amerks, where he scored 30 points but had a -15. He saw action in two NHL games for the Sabres, picking up 1 goal and 1 assist.
Who wins? BC. Both teams are bringing some great offensive talent, but I don't think Johnny Gaudreau can be matched by anyone on BU's team and he's not going to want to lose a second CACC! Only two of BC's forwards haven't seen any NHL action, while 3 of BU's haven't. Additionally, BC has two forwards that are good enough to have only ever played in the NHL, while BU has 0. Lingering injuries could hurt BC's chances though.
Conor Sheary (UMass) and Craig Adams (Harvard) will also be on hand for the game.