Kevin Stevens

Last updated

Kevin Stevens
Born (1965-04-15) April 15, 1965 (age 53)
Brockton, Massachusetts, USA
Height 6 ft 3 in (191 cm)
Weight 230 lb (100 kg; 16 st 6 lb)
Position Left Wing
Shot Left
Played for Pittsburgh Penguins
Boston Bruins
Los Angeles Kings
New York Rangers
Philadelphia Flyers
National teamFlag of the United States.svg  United States
NHL Draft 108th overall, 1983
Los Angeles Kings
Playing career 19872002

Kevin "Artie" Stevens (born April 15, 1965) is an American former ice hockey player and current scout in the National Hockey League (NHL). He played left wing on a line with Mario Lemieux during the Pittsburgh Penguins' Stanley Cup championships in 1991 and 1992. During his career, he also played with the Boston Bruins, Los Angeles Kings, New York Rangers, and Philadelphia Flyers. In 2017, Stevens was named Special Assignment Scout with the Penguins hockey organization. [1]

Ice hockey team sport played on ice using sticks, skates, and a puck

Ice hockey is a contact team sport played on ice, usually in a rink, in which two teams of skaters use their sticks to shoot a vulcanized rubber puck into their opponent's net to score points. The sport is known to be fast-paced and physical, with teams usually consisting of six players each: one goaltender, and five players who skate up and down the ice trying to take the puck and score a goal against the opposing team.

In professional sports, scouts are experienced talent evaluators who travel extensively for the purposes of watching athletes play their chosen sports and determining whether their set of skills and talents represent what is needed by the scout's organization. Some scouts are interested primarily in the selection of prospects, younger players who may require further development by the acquiring team but who are judged to be worthy of that effort and expense for the potential future payoff that it could bring, while others concentrate on players who are already polished professionals whose rights may be available soon, either through free agency or trading, and who are seen as filling a team's specific need at a certain position. Advance scouts watch the teams that their teams are going to play in order to help determine strategy.

National Hockey League North American professional ice hockey league

The National Hockey League is a professional ice hockey league in North America, currently comprising 31 teams: 24 in the United States and 7 in Canada. The NHL is considered to be the premier professional ice hockey league in the world, and one of the major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada. The Stanley Cup, the oldest professional sports trophy in North America, is awarded annually to the league playoff champion at the end of each season.

Contents

Early career

Stevens was born in Brockton, Massachusetts, but grew up in Pembroke, Massachusetts. While attending Silver Lake Regional High School in Kingston, Massachusetts, Kevin Stevens played both hockey and baseball. He was invited to try out for both the Toronto Blue Jays and the Philadelphia Phillies; however, accepting that he was not a great hitter in baseball, he decided to play hockey instead. Stevens accepted a full scholarship to play hockey for Boston College, and was drafted in the sixth round (108th overall) in the 1983 NHL draft by the Los Angeles Kings. Several months later, his rights were traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Anders Håkansson, a left winger from Sweden who had recently been traded to the Penguins along with Ron Meighan from the Minnesota North Stars for the Penguins' first round pick in the 1983 draft (Brian Lawton). [2]

Brockton, Massachusetts City in Massachusetts

Brockton is a city in Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States; the population was 95,314 in the 2015 Census. Brockton, along with Plymouth, are the county seats of Plymouth County. Brockton is the seventh largest city in Massachusetts and is sometimes referred to as the "City of Champions", due to the success of native boxers Rocky Marciano and Marvin Hagler, as well as its successful Brockton High School sports programs. Two of the villages within the city are Montello and Campello, both have the distinction of having their own MBTA Commuter Rail Stations and post offices. Campello is the smallest neighborhood in the city, but also the most populous. Brockton hosts a baseball team, the Brockton Rox. Brockton is one of the windiest cities in the United States, with an average wind speed of 14.3 mph.

Pembroke, Massachusetts Town in Massachusetts, United States

Pembroke is a town in Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 17,837 at the 2010 census.

Silver Lake Regional High School

Silver Lake Regional High School is a public, regional high school in Massachusetts' South Shore region. It is the only secondary school in the Silver Lake Regional School District, comprising the towns of Kingston, Plympton and Halifax, Massachusetts. From 1955 to 2004, the Silver Lake Regional School District included the town of Pembroke, Massachusetts.

Upon graduating from Boston College in 1987, Stevens joined the U.S. National Team and represented the U.S. at the 1987 World Championships and at the 1988 Winter Olympics. Stevens' play steadily improved during his time with the team and in 1987-88 he finished with 45 points in 44 games.

United States mens national ice hockey team mens national ice hockey team representing the USA

The United States men's national ice hockey team is based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, with its U18 and U17 development program in Plymouth, Michigan. The team is controlled by USA Hockey, the governing body for organized ice hockey in the United States. The U.S. team is ranked 4th in the IIHF World Rankings. The current head coach is Jeff Blashill.

NHL career

Stevens played a few games with the Penguins in the 1987–88 NHL season, then spent the 1988–89 NHL season jumping back and forth between the National Hockey League (NHL) and the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the International Hockey League (IHL). Starting with the 1989–90 NHL season, Stevens became one of the top left wingers and power forwards in the league. He had four consecutive seasons of at least 40 goals and 80 points from 1990–1994 and surpassed 50 goals and 100 points in 1991–92 and 1992–93. In the 1991–92 NHL season, Stevens scored 2 points more than Wayne Gretzky (then in his 13th season), becoming only the third person in NHL history to outscore Gretzky in the regular season, though he still finished second in points to teammate Mario Lemieux. His 123 points that year also set a record for the most points by an American-born player and a left wing in one season. During the Pittsburgh Penguins' back-to-back Stanley Cup seasons of 1990–91 and 1991–92, Stevens was the only Penguin to play in every regular season and playoff game. He is also one of four NHL players to have accumulated more than 50 goals and at least 200 PIM in a season, the others are Keith Tkachuk, Brendan Shanahan and Gary Roberts. His 17 goals during the 1990–91 playoffs are tied for fourth all-time (only Jari Kurri and Reggie Leach with 19 and Joe Sakic with 18 have surpassed that mark). He scored 13 more in the 1991–92 postseason.

The 1987–88 NHL season was the 71st season of the National Hockey League. It was an 80-game season with the top four teams in each division advancing to the Stanley Cup Playoffs. This season would see the Edmonton Oilers win their fourth Stanley Cup in five years by sweeping the Boston Bruins 4–0 in the Stanley Cup Final. In the process of their cup win, Edmonton lost only two games, a record for the "16 wins" playoff format.

The 1988–89 NHL season was the 72nd season of the National Hockey League. The Calgary Flames won an all-Canadian Stanley Cup final against the Montreal Canadiens four games to two. As of the end of the 2017–18 NHL season this is the last time two Canadian teams faced each other for the Stanley Cup.

Muskegon Lumberjacks

The Muskegon Lumberjacks are a Tier I junior ice hockey team in the Eastern Conference of the United States Hockey League. They play in Muskegon, Michigan, at L. C. Walker Arena. The Lumberjacks replaced the International Hockey League franchise (IHL) of the same name, which relocated to Evansville, Indiana, at the end of the 2009–10 IHL season.

On May 21, 1992, during game three of the Prince of Wales Conference final against the Boston Bruins, Stevens became the 25th player in NHL history to score three goals in a single playoff period. Scoring a hat trick in the first period, he would add one more goal before the end of the game. The Penguins swept the Bruins then swept the Chicago Blackhawks to win their second straight Stanley Cup.

Boston Bruins ice hockey team based in Boston, United States

The Boston Bruins are a professional ice hockey team based in Boston. They are members of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). The team has been in existence since 1924, and is the league's third-oldest team overall and the oldest in the United States. It is also an Original Six franchise, along with the Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers and Toronto Maple Leafs. The Bruins have won six Stanley Cup championships, tied for fourth most of all-time with the Blackhawks and tied second-most of any American NHL team also with the Blackhawks.

Chicago Blackhawks hockey team of the National Hockey League

The Chicago Blackhawks are a professional ice hockey team based in Chicago, Illinois. They are members of the Central Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). They have won six Stanley Cup championships since their founding in 1926. The Blackhawks are one of the "Original Six" NHL teams along with the Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs, Boston Bruins and New York Rangers. Since 1994, the club's home rink is the United Center, which they share with the National Basketball Association's Chicago Bulls. The club had previously played for 65 years at Chicago Stadium.

One year later, on May 14, 1993, the Penguins were playing the New York Islanders in game seven of the Patrick Division finals. Early in the first period, Stevens skated in and checked Islanders' defenseman Rich Pilon, hitting Pilon's visor with so much force that he knocked himself unconscious. Stevens landed face first on the ice and, unable to soften the blow upon landing, shattered most of the bones in his face and required extensive reconstructive surgery. Doctors cut an incision below his hairline from ear-to-ear, which was later closed with over 100 stitches, peeled back his skin and reassembled the bones in Stevens' face with the use of metal plates. Stevens came back to have one more strong season for the Penguins, in 1993–94 (41 goals, 47 assists), before being traded the next year.

New York Islanders hockey team of the National Hockey League

The New York Islanders are a professional ice hockey team based in the New York metropolitan area. They are members of the Metropolitan Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). The team splits its home games between Barclays Center in the borough of Brooklyn and Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York. The Islanders are one of three NHL franchises in the New York metropolitan area, along with the New Jersey Devils and New York Rangers, and their fan base resides primarily on Long Island.

The Patrick Division of the National Hockey League (NHL) was formed in 1974 as part of the Clarence Campbell Conference. The division moved to the Prince of Wales Conference in 1981. The division existed for 19 seasons until 1993. It was named in honor of Lester Patrick, player and longtime coach of the New York Rangers, who was a developer of ice hockey. It is the forerunner of the old Atlantic Division, which later became the Metropolitan Division in 2013.

Richard Brian Pilon is a Canadian retired ice hockey player of Métis heritage. He was drafted 143rd overall in the 1986 NHL Entry Draft by the New York Islanders. Playing as a defenceman, Pilon played for the Islanders, New York Rangers and St. Louis Blues during his 15-year NHL career.

Stevens was sent to the Boston Bruins in 1995 along with Shawn McEachern for Glen Murray and Bryan Smolinski. After being traded from the Penguins, Stevens never again reached the success that he had while in Pittsburgh. After "disappointing" in Boston with 23 points in 41 games, he was traded to the Los Angeles Kings. After a poor season, he was traded to the New York Rangers in 1997, where he experienced several solid seasons, but failed to match the expectations levied on him from his marked success playing with Mario Lemieux and the Penguins.

During the 1999–2000 season, Stevens struggled. Not only did he rarely see the ice during this season, but after a game against the St. Louis Blues, he was caught in an East St. Louis, Illinois motel with a prostitute and crack cocaine. [3] After this event, Stevens entered the NHL/NHLPA Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health Program.

After being released from the program, he played a brief stint with the Philadelphia Flyers before being traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins for a second time. After one decent season and another season where he rarely received playing time, he retired from the NHL in 2002.

On September 1, 2005, Stevens returned to an off-ice role in the NHL when he was hired by the Pittsburgh Penguins as a talent scout.

Post-NHL

In 2011, Stevens left the Pittsburgh Penguins organization as a pro scout to spend more time with his family. He coached youth hockey including a traveling team in the Boston area.

In June 2015, his son, Luke Stevens, was drafted by the Carolina Hurricanes 5th round, 126th overall pick. Luke entered his senior year of high school in September 2015 and has signed a letter of intent to play college hockey at Yale University for the 2016-2017 season.

In May 2016, Stevens and a co-defendant were charged with conspiracy and possession with intent to distribute oxycodone. [4]

In May 2017, Stevens entered a guilty plea in a Boston federal court and was sentenced to probation, community service and a $10,000 fine. [5] Stevens admitted to being addicted to prescription drugs since May 1993 (see above) when he sustained massive injuries during a game an addiction that destroyed his marriage and his post-playing career in hockey. [5]

In January 13, 2018, Stevens' recovery from addiction and his subsequent community service was presented in a 30 minute documentary entitled "Shattered" which aired on Sportsnet, a Canadian sports channel.

Awards and honors

AwardYear
All-Hockey East First Team 1986–87 [6]
AHCA West Second-Team All-American 1986–87 [7]

Transactions

Career statistics

   Regular season   Playoffs
Season TeamLeagueGP G A Pts PIM GPGAPtsPIM
1983–84 Boston College NCAA 376142036
1984–85 Boston CollegeNCAA4013233636
1985–86 Boston CollegeNCAA4217274456
1986–87 Boston CollegeNCAA3935357054
1987–88 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 165278
1988–89 Muskegon Lumberjacks IHL 45244165113
1988–89 Pittsburgh PenguinsNHL24123151911371016
1989–90 Pittsburgh PenguinsNHL76294170171
1990–91 Pittsburgh PenguinsNHL804046861332417163353
1991–92 Pittsburgh PenguinsNHL8054691232542113152828
1992–93 Pittsburgh PenguinsNHL725556111177125111622
1993–94 Pittsburgh PenguinsNHL83414788155611210
1994–95 Pittsburgh PenguinsNHL271512275112471121
1995–96 Boston Bruins NHL4110132349
1995–96 Los Angeles Kings NHL203101322
1996–97 Los Angeles KingsNHL6914203496
1997–98 New York Rangers NHL80142741130
1998–99 New York RangersNHL8123204364
1999–00 New York RangersNHL3835843
2000–01 Philadelphia Flyers NHL2327918
2000–01Pittsburgh PenguinsNHL3281523551733620
2001–02 Pittsburgh PenguinsNHL3214525
NHL totals87432939772614701034660106170

See also

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References

  1. "Penguins name Kevin Stevens special assignment scout".
  2. "1983 NHL Entry Draft -- Kevin Stevens". www.hockeydraftcentral.com.
  3. Diamos, Jason (January 24, 2000). "Hockey – Stevens Is Arrested in Drug-Related Case". New York Times. Retrieved January 19, 2018.
  4. Leahy, Sean. "Former NHLer Kevin Stevens facing drug charge". Yahoo. Retrieved 13 May 2016.
  5. 1 2 Campbell, Ken (2017-05-05). "Kevin Stevens Avoids Jail Time, and Continues Working to Turn His Life Around". The Hockey News . Retrieved 2018-01-10.
  6. "Hockey East All-Teams". College Hockey Historical Archives. Retrieved May 19, 2013.
  7. "Men's Ice Hockey Award Winners" (PDF). NCAA.org. Retrieved June 11, 2013.