Alums to Face Off in Conf. Final

Former teammates Hagelin, Pacioretty among the 14 NCAA players in Rangers, Canadiens lineups.
Carl Hagelin (left) and Max Pacioretty (above, right) combined for 26 goals as freshmen at Michigan in 2007-08.

A meeting of former Michigan Wolverine teammates highlights an impressive number of college connections in the NHL's Eastern Conference Final, set to begin Saturday with the New York Rangers visiting Montreal for Game 1.

Max Pacioretty and Carl Hagelin, two of the more dynamic players on each roster, were freshmen together at Michigan in 2007-08. Led by Hobey Baker winner and current Buffalo Sabre Kevin Porter, that team won the CCHA regular-season and playoff championships and reached the NCAA Frozen Four in Denver.

Each has played an integral role for their teams to this point. Pacioretty, who led Montreal in goals and points in the regular season, had goals in Games 6 and 7 as the Canadiens came back to beat Boston in the conference semifinals. Hagelin shares the Ranger playoff lead in goals (4) and is tied for fifth on the team in points (7).

They are supported by a number of former college players on each roster. Eight alums have suited up in the playoffs for the Rangers, while six have played for the Canadiens.

Included in that group are three NCAA champions (Brian Gionta, Chris Kreider, Thomas Vanek), three Hobey Baker Award finalists (Gionta, Douglas Murray, Martin St. Louis) and nine All-America selections (Brian Boyle, Gionta, Hagelin, Kreider, Dominic Moore, Murray, St. Louis, Vanek, Mike Weaver). The players represent nine schools: Boston College (3), Wisconsin (3), Michigan (2), Alabama-Huntsville, Cornell, Harvard, Michigan State, Minnesota and Vermont.

Below is a look at the alums on each roster courtesy of College Hockey Inc.'s NHL Matchup Tool:

MONTREAL CANADIENS

Former Collegians

3 – Douglas Murray – Cornell (1999-2003)

  • A finalist for the 2002 Hobey Baker Award
  • Two-time first-team All-American (2002, 2003)
  • The ECAC Best Defensive Defenseman in 2003
  • Teammates included Matt Moulson, David LeNeveu

20 – Thomas Vanek – Minnesota (2002-04)

  • Tournament Most Outstanding Player and team’s top scorer while leading Minnesota to the 2003 NCAA championship in Buffalo
  • Second-team All-American in 2004
  • 2003 WCHA Rookie of the Year
  • Teammates included Paul Martin, Keith Ballard

21 – Brian Gionta – Boston College (1997-2001)

  • Won the 2001 NCAA championship in his final college game
  • Four-time All-American (second-team as a freshman, first-team his last three years)
  • A three-time finalist for the Hobey Baker Award (1999, 2000, 2001)
  • Won the 2001 Walter Brown Award as the top American-born player in New England
  • Hockey East Player of the Year in 2001 and Rookie of the Year in 1998
  • The school’s career leader in goals (123); second on Boston College’s career scoring list behind only David Emma
  • Teammates included Marty Reasoner, Mike Mottau, Rob Scuderi, Scott Clemmensen, Brooks Orpik, Chuck Kobasew, Krys Kolanos

22 – George Parros – Princeton (2005-07)

  • First Princeton player to win the Stanley Cup
  • Never had more than 38 PIMs in a season at Princeton; never led the team in PIMs

27 – Rene Bourque – Wisconsin (2000-04)

  • Teammates included Dany Heatley, Brad Winchester, Tom Gilbert, Adam Burish, Ryan Suter, Jake Dowell, Brian Elliott

43 – Mike Weaver – Michigan State (1996-2000)

  • Twice named the CCHA’s Best Defensive Defenseman (1999, 2000)
  • Two-time second-team All-America selection (1999, 2000)
  • Teammates included John-Michael Liles, Ryan Miller, Mike Weaver, Adam Hall

67 – Max Pacioretty – Michigan (2007-08)

  • CCHA Rookie of the Year
  • Teammates included Aaron Palushaj, Kevin Porter, Steve Kampfer, Chris Summers, Carl Hagelin, Chad Kolarik
NEW YORK RANGERS

Former Collegians

20 – Chris Kreider – Boston College (2009-12)

  • Leading scorer for the Eagles as a junior, leading them to the NCAA title at Tampa Bay Times Forum
  • Also won the NCAA title as a freshman in Detroit
  • Second-team All-Hockey East in 2012
  • Hockey East All-Rookie Team as a freshman

21 – Derek Stepan – Wisconsin (2008-10)

  • Led the Badgers in scoring and ranked second nationally as a sophomore (54 points in 41 GP)
  • Teammates included Ryan McDonagh, Craig Smith, Jamie McBain, Jake Gardiner, Brendan Smith

22 – Brian Boyle – Boston College (2003-07)

  • Two-time All-American (first-team in 2007, second-team in 2006)
  • MVP of the 2005 Hockey East Tournament
  • Teammates included Patrick Eaves, Ryan Shannon, Cory Schneider, Andrew Alberts, Nathan Gerbe, Benn Ferriero, Ben Smith, Peter Harrold
  • Played some defense as a senior

26 – Martin St. Louis – Vermont (1993-97)

  • A three-time finalist for the Hobey Baker Award (1995, 1996, 1997)
  • 1995 ECAC Player of the Year
  • First-team All-American in 1995, 1996 and 1997
  • Led the team in scoring all four years and holds Vermont career records in points and assists
  • Shares school records in single-season points and assists; set records for SHG (6) and GWG (9) in 1995-96
  • Teammates included Tim Thomas, Eric Perrin

27 – Ryan McDonagh – Wisconsin (2007-10)

  • Team tri-captain and second-team All-WCHA as a junior
  • WCHA All-Rookie Team in 2008
  • Teammates included Derek Stepan, Kyle Turris, Jamie McBain, Blake Geoffrion, Davis Drewiske, Jake Gardiner, Craig Smith, Brendan Smith

28 – Dominic Moore – Harvard (1999-2003)

  • First-team All-American in 2003
  • First-team All-ECAC as a senior; second-team as a sophomore
  • Team captain as a senior
  • Ranks 10th in career goals at Harvard, 11th in career points
  • Played one season with his two older brothers, Steve and Mark

33 – Cam Talbot – Alabama-Huntsville (2007-10)

  • MVP of the 2010 College Hockey America Tournament
  • Second-team All-CHA in 2010

62 – Carl Hagelin – Michigan (2007-11)

  • The CCHA’s Best Defensive Forward in 2011
  • 2011 Second-team All-American
  • Teammates included Kevin Porter, Max Pacioretty, Steve Kampfer, Aaron Palushaj, Chad Kolarik
Front Office

Owner, President and CEO Geoff Molson – St. Lawrence
Dir., Player Personnel – Scott Mellanby (1984-86)
Amateur Scout Bill Berglund – Boston State (1967-70)
Amateur Scout Pat Westrum – Minnesota (1967-70)
Pro Scout Mark Mowers  New Hampshire (1994-98)

Front Office

Video Coach Jerry Dineen – SUNY-Plattsburgh (1987-90)
Director, Player Personnel Gordie Clark – New Hampshire (1971-74)
Director, Pro Scouting Kevin Maxwell – North Dakota (1978-79)
Amateur Scout Brendon Clark – Merrimack (2001-05)
AHL Head Coach Ken Gernander – Minnesota (1987-91)
AHL Assistant Coach Pat Boller – SUNY-Potsdam

In the System

Mac Bennett – Michigan (2010-14)

  • Team captain this year
  • Second-team All-Big Ten

Mike Condon – Princeton (2009-13)

Robbie Czarnik – Michigan (2008-09)

44 – Davis Drewiske – Wisconsin (2004-08)

  • Won the 2006 NCAA championship
  • Teammates included Joe Pavelski, Brian Elliott, Jake Dowell, Adam Burish, Tom Gilbert, Joe Piskula, Jack Skille, Jamie McBain, Blake Geoffrion, Kyle Turris, Ryan McDonagh

71 – Louis Leblanc – Harvard (2009-10)

  • Led the Crimson in scoring as a freshman

64 – Greg Pateryn – Michigan (2008-12)

  • Teammates included Carl Hagelin, Aaron Palushaj, Chris Summers, Chris Brown

In the System

37 – Conor Allen – Massachusetts (2010-13)

  • Two-time member of the Hockey East All-Academic Team

41 – Stu Bickel – Minnesota (2007-08)

  • Teammates included Blake Wheeler, Cade Fairchild, Kyle Okposo

Mat Bodie – Union (2010-14)

  • Captain of the 2014 NCAA champions
  • First-team All-American and first-team All-ECAC Hockey selection as a senior
  • Third-team All-ECAC selection as a junior

39 – Ryan Haggerty – Rensselaer (2011-14)

  • Led ECAC Hockey and ranked fourth nationally with 28 goals as a junior
  • Second-team All-American and first-team All-ECAC Hockey selection

Kyle Jean – Lake Superior State (2010-12)

Danny Kristo – North Dakota (2009-13)

  • First-team All-American, first-team All-WCHA selection and one of 10 Hobey Baker finalists as a senior

29 – David LeNeveu – Cornell (2001-03)

  • Shared ECAC Hockey Player of the Year honors in 2002-03 (with Chris Higgins) when he led the nation in win percentage, GAA and save percentage
  • First-team All-American, first-team All-ECAC Hockey, Ken Dryden Award winner (top ECAC goalie), Hobey Baker Award finalist and ECAC Tournament MVP in 2003
  • Holds Cornell records for single-season (1.20) and career (1.29) GAA
  • Teammates included Matt Moulson, Douglas Murray

8 – Darroll Powe – Princeton (2003-07)

  • Team captain as a senior
  • Three times won Princeton’s Tucker Ironman Award for dedication to conditioning
  • Classmate of Kevin Westgarth
College Draft Picks

Josiah Didier – Jr., D, Denver – 4th (97), 2011

Mark MacMillan – Jr., F, North Dakota –4th (113), 2010

College Draft Picks

Steven Fogarty  So., F, Notre Dame – 3rd (72), 2011

Cristoval Nieves  So., F, Michigan 2nd (59), 2012

Brady Skjei  So., D, Minnesota  1st (28), 2012

  • Honorable mention All-Big Ten this year

 

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