Thiessen OK With Runner-Up Status This Time
by Dane DeKrey/Staff Writer
WASHINGTON, D.C. Brad Thiessen is college hockey’s proverbial Charlie Brown.
He, and his team for that matter, have found itself on the short end of the stick an astounding eight times this season.
As if the first seven – the Kendall Hockey Classic, the Rensselaer Holiday Hockey Tournament, the Dodge Holiday Classic, the Beanpot, the Hockey East regular season, the Hockey East conference tournament, and the NCAA tournament – weren’t enough, he was dealt another blow on Friday evening, as Boston University’s Matt Gilroy, not Thiessen, was named the 2009 Hobey Baker Award winner.
But Thiessen, the biggest factor in Northeastern’s success this season, wasn’t bitter. In fact, he broached the topic entirely differently.
“You know, all three of us [Thiessen, Gilroy, and BU’s Colin Wilson] were talking about how it’s been a great experience over the past couple of days,” said Thiessen. “It’s all been really cool and a lot of fun, I’m happy for Matt, and I definitely don’t feel like a loser.”
Thiessen’s "loser" theme, in fairness, is mostly tongue-and-cheek, as his stellar junior season earned the British Columbia native plenty of individual accolades, including Hockey East Player of the Year, first-team All Hockey East, and first-team All-American.
These accolades, along with his future potential, have afforded Thiessen an opportunity all college hockey players strive for – an entry level professional contract.
For Thiessen, the contract came from the Pittsburgh Penguins, who, since signing him, have sent Thiessen to their AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” said Thiessen of his time in the professional ranks. “It’s funny to kind of think of hockey as your job now, you know? It’s still fun, but you’re getting paid to do it now.”
With prospects camp slated for this summer in Pittsburgh, the future for Thiessen, despite his seven "losses" this season, looks very bright.