When I first began skating I started out at a learn to skate program at age 7. They recommended I join a team, and at the time it was Mid State Mite Youth Hockey. Before I knew it our team was playing in a tournament in Canada. The following season I ended up playing for the Worcester Crusaders, which was a team in the MBHL (Metropolitan Boston Hockey League). I went to a general tryout for the Crusaders and although I was a 77' birthdate they told me I was good enough to play up with the 76's. The Worcester Crusader team I use to play for use to practice 4 to 5 times a week on full ice, and we use to have at least 2 games every weekend. I continued to play up for the next few years before playing with my own birth year. I went on to play for the Mass Bay Chief's who were the best MBHL franchise. We went on to be undefeated for the 3 years that I was there and we won numerous tournaments all throughout North America. Our Mass Bay Chief's team had four NHL draft picks Bryan Berard, Brian Boucher, Robert Haglund, and myself.
It wasn't long after I had started skating that hockey became more intense and something I wanted to do all the time. Every summer I went to a 10 week camp where we skated 4 to 5 hours per day, 5 days a week. I use to live for vacation days during the school year because that meant more time on the ice. I went to public skating and public hockey for 6 to 7 hours on these days at Lake Ave Ice arena that was about 2 miles from my house, and then went to whatever team practice I had at night.
High School Bio
I was fortunate enough to play 6 years of varsity high school hockey. The high school I selected to go, Saint Peter Marion, had a Junior High and if you were good enough to make the varsity they would let you play. I was 13 years old playing against 17 and 18 year old kids and it was a great experience for me and I really developed a lot during my time there. I played at Saint Peter's for 3 years. I was recruited by Cushing Academy, a private Prep School, and transferred over for my Sophomore year. They played twice as many games and there was a lot more practice time. With great coaches and highly skilled players our team over the next 3 years went on to have 112 wins, 8 loses and 5 ties. My Sophomore, Junior, and Senior year, I was chosen for hockey night in Boston. That would get you an additional 15 to 20 games per summer. My senior year I was chosen to represent Team USA at the World Junior Championships in Boston.
During my Junior year I was recruited by numerous Division I schools and I was also drafted by the OHL (Ontario Hockey League, which is Canada's top Junior League) and was offered a lucrative deal, but instead I chose to go play for Boston University for two main reasons. Number one- for legendary coach Jack Parker, and Number two- because of distinguished strength and conditioning coach Mike Boyle.
College & Pro Bio
The summer before my freshman year at BU I was drafted in the 3rd round of the 1996 NHL entry draft, 59th overall. I went on to play for BU for the following two years. We had a great team we won 2 Beanpot's and we won 2 Hockey East regular season championships. We also won 1 playoff championship. I was the first defenseman in 19 years to win the MVP of the Beanpot Tournament. My freshman year I was selected again to represent team USA for the World Junior Championships in Switzerland and we won the Silver Medal. I also made the Hockey East All Rookie Team my freshman year and the NCAA All Tournament Team. Sophomore year I was name first team All American and voted best defenseman in Hockey East.
After my Sophomore year I decided to pursue my NHL dream. I made the Edmonton Oilers and was able to stay with the team all season. My first year with Edmonton I made the All Rookie team. From there I went on to play 14 more seasons in the NHL. I was selected to play in the NHL All Star game in 2002 and also selected to play for Team USA in the 2002 Olympic games, where we won the silver medal under Coach Herb Brooks. It was the first time in over 20 years Team USA captured a medal since the "Miracle on Ice" team won gold in the 1980 Olympics.