Lovejoy with the Penguins in 2011
February 20, 1984 |
Concord, NH, USA
|Height||6 ft 2 in (188 cm)|
|Weight||214 lb (97 kg; 15 st 4 lb)|
Benjamin N. "The Reverend" Lovejoy (born February 20, 1984) is an American professional ice hockey defenseman, currently in his second tenure with the Pittsburgh Penguins of the National Hockey League (NHL). He has also played for the Anaheim Ducks.
Lovejoy played high school hockey for preparatory school Deerfield Academy in Deerfield, Massachusetts. The program has turned out numerous NCAA Division 1 standout players over the past two decades, many of whom have gone on to continue their playing careers in the NHL.
Undrafted by an NHL team, Lovejoy played one year for Boston College and three years for Dartmouth College of the NCAA's Hockey East and ECAC conferences, respectively. During his third year of collegiate hockey, he was offered a professional contract by the Montreal Canadiens, though he declined the offer in order to finish his degree and develop further as a player. Lovejoy also played lacrosse at Dartmouth, earning All-Ivy honors in 2006. He graduated from Dartmouth in 2007.
Lovejoy began his professional career a few days after graduation and played five games with the Norfolk Admirals of the American Hockey League (AHL) to end the 2006–07 season. In the summer of 2007, Lovejoy signed an AHL contract with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, the top minor league affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins. He scored his first professional goal at home on March 17, 2008. Lovejoy ended the season with 20 points (two goals and 18 assists) from 72 games and recording a +16 plus-minus rating.
On July 7, 2008, Lovejoy signed an NHL contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins. On December 7, 2008, when a replacement was needed for Pittsburgh defenseman Hal Gill, Lovejoy received his first call-up to the NHL. At the time of his recall, he was ranked in the top ten amongst AHL defensemen in 14 points (four goals and ten assists) and placed in the top ten amongst all AHL players in plus minus, with +14 in 24 games. Lovejoy made his NHL debut on December 8, 2008, in a 4–3 loss against the Buffalo Sabres.
Lovejoy was named to the PlanetUSA squad for the 2009 AHL All-Star Classic, which was held January 25 and 26, 2009, at the DCU Center in Worcester, Massachusetts. During the Skills Competition, he took part in the hardest shot and breakaway challenges.
On April 11, 2009, Lovejoy received the Second Team AHL All-Star Award, as well as being named the League's top defenseman. He ended the regular 2008–09 season leading the entire AHL in plus-minus, with +42. He was up called during the playoffs by Pittsburgh a spare player. Lovejoy did not play in the playoffs, but was included on the team picture, and awarded a Stanley Cup ring. Lovejoy only played 2 games for Pittsburgh in 2008-09, so he did not qualify to be have his name stamped on the Stanley Cup.
Lovejoy notched his first NHL point with an assist during a 6–5 Penguins victory over the Boston Bruins on November 14, 2009. He scored his first NHL goal on December 22, 2010, against Scott Clemmensen of the Florida Panthers. In the same game, he took an opposing shot off of his cheek, causing massive swelling.
Prior to the beginning of 2013–14 season, Lovejoy, as an unrestricted free agent, re-signed with the Ducks on a three-year contract. On January 3, 2014, Lovejoy celebrated the birth of his first child, Lila (born on December 31, 2013), by scoring two first period goals against the Edmonton Oilers. The two goals were scored less than three minutes apart, establishing a new Ducks franchise record.
Awards and honors
|All-ECAC Hockey Third Team||2006–07|
- "Penguins sign defenseman Ben Lovejoy". Pittsburgh Penguins. July 7, 2008. Retrieved December 8, 2008.
- "Ducks acquire Lovejoy from Penguins in exchange for pick". The Sports Network. January 6, 2013. Retrieved January 6, 2013.
- "Penguins Acquire Defenseman Ben Lovejoy from the Anaheim Ducks for Simon Despres". Pittsburgh Penguins. March 2, 2015. Retrieved March 2, 2015.