May 24, 1980 |
Braintree, MA, USA
|Height||6 ft 4 in (193 cm)|
|Weight||211 lb (96 kg; 15 st 1 lb)|
|Played for||Tampa Bay Lightning|
|NHL Draft||226th overall, 2000
Tampa Bay Lightning
Brian M. Eklund (born May 24, 1980) is a retired American professional ice hockey goaltender who played in one National Hockey League (NHL) game with the Tampa Bay Lightning during the 2005–06 season. He currently runs his own goalie school, Massachusetts Crease Goaltending School, as well as being an assistant and goalie coach for the Brown Bears men's ice hockey team.
After four seasons at Brown University, he signed a two-year rookie contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning. He was then assigned by the Lightning to the Pensacola Ice Pilots of the ECHL. In his first season with the Ice Pilots (02–03), he was the back up to Maxime Gingras. He played in 19 games and posted a 10–6–0 record with a 3.66 goals against average and a .896 save percentage. When the Ice Pilots concluded their season after being eliminated in the playoffs, he was called up to the Springfield Falcons of the AHL. He appeared in one game allowing only one goal and getting the win.
In the 03–04 campaign, Gingras did not return to Pensacola leaving the #1 goalie slot open for contest. Brian battled fellow Lightning prospect Evgeny Konstantinov for the #1 slot. He easily won the job. He appeared in all but 10 of the Ice Pilots 72 regular season games. This feat ranks second overall in the ECHL for games played in a season. As the top goalie, he shone even though the team lacked defense at times. He finished the season with a 38–17–7 record with a 3.01 GAA and a .921 SV%.
In 04–05, Eklund spent the whole season with the Falcons, after signing a new one-year deal with the Lightning. He played 43 games going 14–23–0 with a 3.01 GAA and a .911 SV%. The team struggled that year notching only 24 wins in 80 games for a record of 24–53–3. Despite the teams struggles Brian was named team MVP.
In 05–06, Brian was the back up goalie behind both Jonathan Boutin and Gerald Coleman at different times of the season. He also played two games for the Johnstown Chiefs of the ECHL. This was, however the season he was called up to the NHL to play his first and only NHL game. He allowed 3 goals and made 16 saves in 58 minutes of play. However, he lost the game. He was traded to the Boston Bruins of the NHL who then assigned him to their AHL team, the Providence Bruins where he played 12 games going 3–6–1 with a 3.52 GAA and a .870 SV%.
Post Playing Days
Eklund is currently the director of Newton Youth Hockey's Goaltending Focus with Brian Eklund. He has also started his own goaltending school, Massachusetts Crease Goalie School, where he works with goalies from many different youth organizations around the state of Massachusetts. Some of the organizations that he currently works with are: Natick Youth, Newton Youth, NECDL, St Moritz Devils, King Philip Walpole, Boston Advantage, Weymouth Youth, Hingham Youth, West Bay Islanders, and the Coastal Stars organization. Additionally, he is an assistant coach for his alma mater, Brown University.
Records, Awards, and Accolades
Brian was awarded a Stanley Cup Championship Ring as he was the Tampa Bay Lightning's 3rd goalie during the teams 2004 playoff run
Brian set the following ECHL records:
- Minutes played in one season (3,724)
- Saves in one season (2,194)
- Most saves in playoff game (83) (2–1 2OT loss to Louisiana)
Brian tied the following records:
- matching the record for wins in a season (38)