Drew Stafford

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Drew Stafford
Drew Stafford Sabres 2012-02-19.JPG
Stafford with the Sabres in 2012
Born (1985-10-30) October 30, 1985 (age 28)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S.
Height 6 ft 2 in (188 cm)
Weight 202 lb (92 kg; 14 st 6 lb)
Position Right Wing
Shoots Right
NHL team Buffalo Sabres
National team  United States
NHL Draft 13th overall, 2004
Buffalo Sabres
Playing career 2006–present

Drew Stafford (born October 30, 1985) is an American ice hockey player. Stafford plays forward for the Buffalo Sabres of the National Hockey League (NHL). He started his professional career with the American Hockey League's Rochester Americans before being called up to the NHL on November 5, 2006.

Early life[edit]

Stafford was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, but grew up in Faribault, Minnesota. His father, Gordie, played professional hockey in the International Hockey League and is the head coach of the girl's hockey team at Shattuck-Saint Mary's in Faribault, Minnesota, where Drew played high-school hockey.[1] His uncle, Barrie Stafford, was the head equipment manager for the Edmonton Oilers for 28 years before retiring in 2012.[2]

Playing career[edit]

Stafford played for the St. Albert Bantam AA Flyers in St. Albert, Alberta in 1999–2000. During this season he finished 3rd in league scoring with 26 goals and 47 points in 30 league games, and led his team to a provincial berth. At the conclusion of the season Stafford was selected to participate in Hockey Alberta's elite development program as a member of the Northwest Sharks in the 2000 Pioneer Chrysler Alberta Cup.

Stafford played at Shattuck-Saint Mary's in Faribault, Minnesota for two years and played on the US national team at the 2003 IIHF World U18 Championships. He then played for three seasons at the University of North Dakota and on the US national team at the 2004 and 2005 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships. Following his freshman season, Stafford was drafted 13th overall in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft by the Buffalo Sabres. After two more seasons, he signed a contract with the Sabres in 2006, foregoing his senior season at the University of North Dakota. Stafford finished his three-year collegiate career with 118 points (48 goals, 70 assists).

Stafford skating with teammate Jordan Leopold in 2011

Stafford started his professional career with Buffalo's AHL affiliate, the Rochester Americans. With nine points in the first eleven games of the season, he caught the attention of the Sabres' management, and was called up to Buffalo in early November to replace injured winger Maxim Afinogenov. In his NHL debut on November 5 against the New York Rangers, Stafford assisted on a game-winning overtime goal by Danny Brière, receiving his first NHL point. On November 11, he scored his first goal in the NHL on the Philadelphia Flyers' Antero Niittymäki. He won NHL Rookie of the Month honors for March 2007 despite the fact that Paul Stastny of the Colorado Avalanche had his record breaking rookie scoring streak in the same month. Stafford scored his first game-winning goal on February 27 against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Stafford became a regular to the Sabres lineup in the 2007–2008 season, scoring his first career hat trick against the Atlanta Thrashers on January 18, 2008. More than a year later he went on to score his second hat trick in a 10-2 rout of the Edmonton Oilers on January 27, 2009. A little less than a year after that, he celebrated his third hat trick on December 15, 2010 against the Boston Bruins. He added his fourth, also against Boston, on January 1, 2011, his fifth on February 8, 2011 versus the Tampa Bay Lightning, and his sixth on February 13, 2011 against the New York Islanders.

On June 3, 2011, Stafford signed a 4 year, $16 million extension with the Sabres.[3]

Personal Life[edit]

His father, Gord Stafford, played professional hockey with the Milwaukee Admirals and Wichita Wind during the 1980s.[4]

Stafford formed a band called "Red Seal Peach" while at UND with goaltender Jordan Parise.[5]

Stafford appears in the Every Time I Die video for "Decayin with the Boys," playing jenga at a party in full uniform.[6]

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season and playoffs[edit]

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2003–04 University of North Dakota WCHA 36 11 21 32 30
2004–05 University of North Dakota WCHA 40 13 22 35 34
2005–06 University of North Dakota WCHA 41 24 23 47 63
2006–07 Rochester Americans AHL 34 22 22 44 30
2006–07 Buffalo Sabres NHL 41 13 14 27 33 10 2 2 4 4
2007–08 Buffalo Sabres NHL 64 16 22 38 51
2008–09 Buffalo Sabres NHL 79 20 25 45 29
2009–10 Buffalo Sabres NHL 71 14 20 34 35 3 0 0 0 0
2010–11 Buffalo Sabres NHL 62 31 21 52 34 7 1 2 3 2
2011–12 Buffalo Sabres NHL 80 20 30 50 46
2012–13 Buffalo Sabres NHL 46 6 12 18 21
2013–14 Buffalo Sabres NHL 70 16 18 34 39
NHL totals 513 136 162 298 288 20 3 4 7 6

International[edit]

Medal record
ice hockey
Competitor for the  United States
World Junior Championships
Gold 2004 Helsinki
Year Team Event Result GP G A Pts PIM
2003 United States WJC18 4th 6 3 2 5 8
2004 United States WJC Gold medal icon.svg 6 0 2 2 2
2005 United States WJC 4th 7 5 4 9 14
2006 United States WC 7th 7 0 1 1 0
2008 United States WC 6th 7 1 3 4 6
2009 United States WC 4th 9 2 1 3 6
Junior totals 19 8 8 16 24
Senior totals 23 3 5 8 12

Awards and honors[edit]

Award Year
All-WCHA Third Team 2005–06
AHL All-Star Classic 2006–07

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Thomas Vanek
Buffalo Sabres first round draft pick
2004
Succeeded by
Marek Zagrapan