April 26, 2016
By Dan Colleran
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Four former Notre Dame hockey players have advanced to the second round of the 2016 National Hockey League playoffs, which begin on Wednesday, April 27.
- Erik Condra and the Tampa Bay Lightning defeated Riley Sheahan and the Detroit Red Wings, four games to one, to advance to a second round series against the New York Islanders.
- Condra, who is in the midst of his sixth NHL season but first with Tampa Bay, played in two games during the first round win over Detroit.
- The Islanders advanced with a dramatic, double overtime game six win against the Florida Panthers. Current New York Islander and former Notre Dame star Anders Lee is rehabbing an injury sustained just before the start of the playoffs.
- Lee joined Digger Phelps for a Notre Dame Day interview on Monday, April 25 and mentioned he is hoping to work his way back into the lineup should the Islanders keep advancing (watch here).
- Game one of the Lighting-Islanders series will be played at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, April 27 (NBCSN).
- Ian Cole and Bryan Rust helped the Pittsburgh Penguins skate past the New York Rangers, four games to one, to advance to a second round series against the Washington Capitals (start date TBD).
- Rust provided the game five heroics to lift the Penguins to the series win, scoring two goals and adding an assist for a three-point night in the 6-3 victory (April 23).
- Rust became the first rookie in Pittsburgh history to post three points in a playoff game and it was his first career multi-goal game (Rust had five multi-goal games for Notre Dame).
- Cole played in all five games in the opening round and he recorded an assist and finished with a +3 rating. He averaged 15:30 of ice time per game as well as 22 shifts per game.
- Stephen Johns and the Dallas Stars defeated the Minnesota Wild, four games to two, to advance to a second round series with the St. Louis Blues (start date TBD).
- Johns played in all six games of the opening round series, averaging 16:58 of ice time per game and over 22 shifts per game. He finished the series with a +1 rating.
- Johns made his NHL debut on March 11 to become the 28th former Notre Dame player to reach the NHL and the 14th that has played under Head Coach Jeff Jackson.
- All told, eight former Notre Dame players saw action during the 2015-16 NHL season, with Vince Hinostroza (Chicago) and Kyle Palmieri (New Jersey) joining Cole, Condra, Johns, Lee, Rust and Sheahan.
- The most recent former Notre Dame skater to claim the Stanley Cup as a player was Mark Eaton, a member of the 2009 champion Penguins.
— ND —
Dan Colleran, associate athletics communications director at the University of Notre Dame, has been a part of Fighting Irish Media since August 2015 and coordinates all media and publicity efforts surrounding the Notre Dame hockey and men’s golf programs. A native of Walpole, Massachusetts, Colleran spent the previous three years working with the men’s hockey and soccer programs at Providence College. Colleran also spent two years as an Assistant Executive Director of Communications & Championships at the Ivy League and is a graduate of Providence College (’06 & ’08G).