Steve Pinizzotto

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Steve Pinizzotto
Steve Pinizzotto with the Edmonton Oilers
Born (1984-04-26) April 26, 1984 (age 32)
Toronto, Ontario, CAN
Height 6 ft 1 in (185 cm)
Weight 205 lb (93 kg; 14 st 9 lb)
Position Right Wing
Shoots Right
DEL team
Former teams
EHC München
Vancouver Canucks
Edmonton Oilers
NHL Draft Undrafted
Playing career 2007–present

Steven Pinizzotto (born April 26, 1984) is a Canadian professional ice hockey right winger. He currently plays with German club, EHC München of the Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL). He began his NHL career in the 2012–13 season with the Vancouver Canucks before moving to the Edmonton Oilers. He won back-to-back Calder Cup championships with the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL).

Playing career[edit]

Junior and College[edit]

In 2000–01 Pinizzotto joined with the Ontario Provincial Junior Hockey League (OPJHL) Oakville Blades. He was a late bloomer, having missed the OHL Draft due to his small size (he was only 5'7" at the time). He stayed with the team for 4 seasons, leading them to the West Division championship in 2003–2004. In 2004–05 Pinizzotto was named team captain Most Valuable Player of the Year, leading in scoring with 33 goals and 62 assists for a total of 95 points. Pinizzotto recorded 78 goals, 137 assists, 215 points over 170 games, 457 penalty minutes and led the team with best plus-minus rating during his tenure with the Blades. It was enough for Tigers Coach Wayne Wilson of the Rochester Institute of Technology to offer Pinizzotto an NCAA Scholarship for ice hockey.[1]

In 2005–06 Pinizzotto joined Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) Tigers of the NCAA Indep. Conference where he recorded 7 goals and 6 assists in 20 games. His next season, 2006–07 RIT joined the Atlantic Hockey conference, since the program moved to the NCAA Division 1 level,[2] Pinizzotto recorded 13 goals and 31 assists in 34 games.

In 2006–07 Pinizzotto led the RIT team with 44 points on 13 goals and 31 assists in only 34 games and 76 penalty minutes. He was fifth in the country with 0.91 assists per game and 12th in all of Division I, averaging 1.29 points per contest. RIT won the Atlantic Hockey regular season championship with a Tiger offense and power play finishing second overall in the nation. Pinizzotto scored eight goals and added 17 assists on the power play. Pinizzotto was the team leader and among the RIT Division I leaders, recording 22 goals and 40 assists for 62 points in 58 career games for RIT and known to be dangerous on the power play.

Hershey Bears[edit]

In March 2007, after playing only 2 years with RIT, Pinizzotto became the first RIT ice hockey player to sign a National Hockey League (NHL) contract shortly after RIT Coach Wayne Wilson told Pinizzotto to call Steve Richmond of the Washington Capitals[3] He signed a two-year entry level contract with the Washington Capitals in March 2007. In later years Pinizzotto played with and against the Vancouver Canucks Chris Tanev also an RTI alumni.[4] Beginning the 2007–08 season with the Washington Capitals' ECHL farm team, the South Carolina Stingrays where recorded 15 goals, 17 assists for 32 points in 40 games and 58 penalty minutes.

In 2009–10 Pinizzotto played a full season with the Hershey Bears American Hockey League (AHL) picking up 41 points (13–28–41). He was a team-best plus-40 with 124 penalty minutes in 69 regular season games Pinizzotto would go on to help the Hershey Bears win the Calder Cup two years in a row.

In March 2009, Pinizzotto was called up to the Capitals as an injury reserve. Despite taking part in the pre-game warmup against the Toronto Maple Leafs on March 23, he remained on standby.[5] By the latter part of the season was sent back to Hershey, without appearing for the Capitals, and remained for duration of the season.[6][7]

Vancouver Canucks[edit]

With the Vancouver Canucks

On July 3, 2011, Pinizzotto signed a one-year, two-way deal ($600,000) with the Vancouver Canucks after receiving contract offers from 9 other NHL teams. Pinizzotto was slated to fill a 4th line spot with the Canucks right out of training camp. The Canucks saw him as a Raffi Torres replacement. His combination of physicality, puck-handling ability and scoring, skating well, finishing checks, going hard to the net and his defensive ability impressed Coach Alain Vigneault. He recorded 2-assist, 5-hit effort in a preseason home opener against the Calgary Flames and finishing the preseason tied for the highest plus/minus on the team at plus-3 and 5 points in 4 games. Pinizzotto who made the team out of Training Camp suffered a left shoulder injury on an ill-timed hit on Douglas Murray during their last preseason game against the San Jose Sharks on September 25, 2011.[8] His shoulder was popped back into place but after being on IR for 6 weeks, he tweeked his shoulder in practice just before a team road trip. Pinizzotto's injury caused him to miss the entire season.[9] In his absence Vancouver claimed Dale Weise on waivers.

On July 2, 2012, Pinizzotto was re-signed with the Canucks.[10] During the 2012 NHL Lockout he was assigned to the Chicago Wolves where he tallied four goals, eight assists and 29 penalty minutes in 24 games. Pinizzotto is a strong skater, goes hard to the net and has a heavy shot. His offensive side, strong penalty killing skills and aggressive play attracts attention.[11]

Pinizzotto consistently shows grit and two-way play with a combination of physicality and scoring having 38 goals, 72 assists, 110 points, and 408 penalty minutes in his 234 career AHL games with Chicago and Hershey where he was a strong contributor for their 2009 and 2010 Calder Cup Championship.[12]

Vancouver protected Pinizzotto believing a high degree of probability he would be picked up on waivers so on March 13, 2013, Steve Pinizzotto was headed to Vancouver for an NHL opportunity.[13][14][15] He was a sought-after commodity when he signed with Vancouver and always attracts a lot of interest for his grit, tenacity and decent skill level. The Canucks were anxious to get Pinizzotto back into their lineup and bringing a physical presence to the game.[16]

Pinizzotto made his NHL debut on March 14, 2013 against the Nashville Predators after travelling all day and arriving from Chicago just hours before game start. In his first shift of the game when he sent Nashville's Kevin Klein crashing to the ice with a big hit leading to a fight with the defenceman.[17]

Edmonton Oilers and Florida Panthers[edit]

On August 4, 2013, Pinizzotto was signed by the Florida Panthers to a one-year, two-way deal.[18] Following training camp, Pinizzotto played 21 games for Florida AHL affiliate, the San Antonio Rampage where he scored 7 points (6–1–7) and racked up 67 penalty minutes. Pinizzotto is known for his work ethic and perseverance.[19]

On January 17, 2014, the Panthers traded Pinizzotto (along with Jack Combs) to the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for Derek Nesbitt and Ryan Martindale.[20] Pinizzotto impresses Oklahoma City Barons Coach Todd Nelson with a hard nosed two-way style, energy and the spark he brings to the game.[21]

In April 2014, the 6'1", 205 pound forward got a call from the Edmonton Oilers to play wing. The 29-year-old veteran gave a strong presence, having had 12 games recording 29 penalty minutes with Vancouver, added a physical dimension with skill. Pinizzotto impressed the Oilers in his first game with the organization.[22] Using his work ethic, penalty-kill abilities, Pinizzotto was called up to play 6 games with the Oilers where he sparks some fireworks Matt Beleskey of the Anaheim Ducks.[23] He played six games with the Oilers and recorded his first two NHL points and 15 penalty minutes.

On June 12, 2014, depth forward Steve Pinizzotto was re-signed by Edmonton Oilers to a one-year extension.[24] Pinizzotto had a strong camp and played 4 pre-season games, scoring 2 points, recording 21 penalty minutes and finishing +2 earning a spot in the last round of cuts.

On November 17, 2014 Pinizzotto was called up by the Oilers from their AHL affiliate the Oklahoma City Barons. Pinizzotto made his 2014–15 season debut on November 19, 2014 against his previous team, the Vancouver Canucks with a Gordie Howe hat trick. At 2:27 into the game, Pinizzotto dropped his gloves with Derek Dorsett, then less than 5 minutes into the second period, Pinizzotto scored his 1st NHL Goal when he beat Ryan Miller with a wrist shot from the top of the circle to open the scoring for the Oilers. Pinizzotto finalized the Gordie Howe hat trick when he assisted Boyd Gordon’s goal. Hockey Night in Canada Coach's Corner Don Cherry and Ron McLean broadcast the replay of Pinizzotto's Gordie Howe hat trick along with multiple broadcasters.[25][26][27][28]

EHC München[edit]

On May 26, 2015, Pinizzotto as an impending free agent, opted to sign his first contract abroad in agreeing to a one-year deal with EHC München of the German league Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL).[29]

Playing Style[edit]

Pinizzotto is an energy style winger, known for his physicality, puck-handling ability and scoring, skating well, finishing checks, going hard to the net and his defensive ability.[30] Pinizzotto missed the 2011–12 season with the Canucks.[31] He is hardworking, consistently shows grit and two-way play with a combination of physicality and scoring having 38 goals, 72 assists, 110 points, and 408 penalty minutes in his 234 career AHL games with Chicago and Hershey where he was a strong contributor for their 2009 and 2010 Calder Cup Championship.[32]


Pinizzotto was born in Toronto, Ontario to Linda Pinizzotto and Leo Pinizzotto. He has Canadian and German dual citizenship because his mother, although born in Canada is of German descent. She is a Real Estate Agent in Mississauga, Ontario. His father is Italian. Pinizzotto has two older brothers, Jason, an Ontario Hockey League (OHL) third round draft pick for the Barrie Colts and professional hockey player for the SC Bietigheim-Bissingen in Germany, and Marc who played pro hockey for the Black Dragons Erfurt in Thüringen Germany.[33]

Pinizzotto credits his strong dedication to hockey from his family. He grew up in Mississauga but played his minor hockey within the Greater Toronto Hockey League, competing with the Toronto Red Wings and Toronto Marlboros with stars like Rick Nash, David Clarkson, Chris Campoli. He also excelled in AAA Rep Baseball playing for the Ontario Baseball Association (OBA).[34] After graduating from high school at the Lorne Park Secondary School, and competing in junior hockey, Pinizzotto received a hockey scholarship with Rochester Institute of Technology where he studied Packaging Design while playing college hockey.[35][36]

In 2000, Pinizzotto was invited to appear in a Näslund-Kovalchuk Nike Hockey Commercial at the age of 17. Markus Näslund was a former Vancouver Canucks and Ilya Kovalchuk was the first overall 2001 NHL Entry Draft for the Atlanta Thrashers. Pinizzotto is seen in the centre front when the Zamboni gates open with Näslund and Kovalchuk.[37][38]

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2000–01 Oakville Blades OPJHL 5 2 1 3 2
2001–02 Oakville Blades OPJHL 34 10 16 26 40
2002–03 Oakville Blades OPJHL 44 16 24 40 152
2003–04 Oakville Blades OPJHL 39 17 34 51 177
2004–05 Oakville Blades OPJHL 48 33 62 95 86
2005–06 RIT Tigers NCAA Indep. 20 7 6 13 32
2006–07 RIT Tigers AHA 34 13 31 44 76
2006–07 Hershey Bears AHL 5 0 0 0 4
2007–08 South Carolina Stingrays ECHL 40 15 17 32 58 10 1 2 3 34
2007–08 Hershey Bears AHL 23 0 4 4 12 5 0 0 0 13
2008–09 Hershey Bears AHL 45 4 7 11 61 21 3 2 5 28
2008–09 South Carolina Stingrays ECHL 11 4 6 10 19
2009–10 Hershey Bears AHL 69 13 28 41 124 21 5 3 8 33
2010–11 Hershey Bears AHL 68 17 25 42 178 6 2 2 4 6
2012–13 Chicago Wolves AHL 24 4 8 12 29
2012–13 Vancouver Canucks NHL 12 0 0 0 29 1 0 0 0 0
2013–14 San Antonio Rampage AHL 21 6 1 7 67
2013–14 Oklahoma City Barons AHL 30 6 12 18 116 1 0 0 0 14
2013–14 Edmonton Oilers NHL 6 0 2 2 15
2014–15 Oklahoma City Barons AHL 25 1 10 11 117
2014–15 Edmonton Oilers NHL 18 2 2 4 30
2015–16 EHC München DEL 42 13 5 18 151 13 4 12 16 66
NHL totals 36 2 4 6 74 1 0 0 0 0

Awards and Honors[edit]

Award Year
Oakville Blades MVP 2005–06


  1. ^ "Steve Pinizzotto profile". Rochester Institute of Technology. 2010-10-01. Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  2. ^ "Men's hockey players enjoying success at the professional level". RIT Athletics. 2010-10-04. Retrieved 2010-11-10. 
  3. ^ "Former RIT player a Hershey Bear". Messenger Post. 2010-04-03. Retrieved 2010-11-10. 
  4. ^ "Former men's hockey stars Chris Tanev and Steve Pinizzotto meet in NHL contest Nov. 19". Rochester Institute of Technology. 2014-11-19. Retrieved 2014-11-19. 
  5. ^ "A players' dream will have to wait". Toronto Sun. 2009-03-25. Retrieved 2009-03-25. 
  6. ^ "Pinner Scores a Winner". 2009-05-18. Retrieved 2009-05-18. 
  7. ^ "Pinner scores a Winner – Sick Celly – Steve Pinizzotto". DeejBTNL. 2009-05-18. Retrieved 2009-05-18. 
  8. ^ "Steve Pinizzotto out for season after shoulder surgery". The Vancouver Sun. 2011-11-15. Retrieved 2011-11-15. 
  9. ^ "Canucks re-sign Andrew Ebbett and Steve Pinizzotto". National Hockey League. 2012-07-02. Retrieved 2012-07-02. 
  10. ^ "Canucks sign Pinizzotto". American Hockey League. 2011-07-03. Retrieved 2011-07-03. 
  11. ^ "If not for bad luck, Steve Pinizzotto would have no luck at all". The Vancouver Sun. 2013-01-07. Retrieved 2013-01-07. 
  12. ^ "Canucks recall Steve Pinizzotto from AHL's Wolves". CBC Sports. 2013-03-14. Retrieved 2013-03-14. 
  13. ^ "Aaron Volpatti vs. Steve Pinizzotto". Canucks Army. 2013-03-01. Retrieved 2013-03-01. 
  14. ^ "Vancouver Canucks recall Steve Pinizzotto from AHL's Chicago". The Canadian Press/Times Colonist. 2013-03-14. Retrieved 2013-03-14. 
  15. ^ "Vancouver Canucks recall forward Steve Pinizzotto from AHL's Chicago". Global Toronto. 2013-03-14. Retrieved 2013-03-14. 
  16. ^ "Canucks hopeful Steve Pinizzotto sees NHL opportunity finally knocking". The Vancouver Sun. 2013-03-13. Retrieved 2013-03-13. 
  17. ^ "Steven Pinizzotto's physical play impresses in debut with Vancouver Canucks". National Hockey League. 2013-03-15. Retrieved 2013-03-15. 
  18. ^ "Panthers sign Steve Pinizotta". Florida Panthers. 2013-08-04. Retrieved 2013-08-13. 
  19. ^ "Former men's hockey star Steve Pinizzotto signs deal with the NHL's Florida Panthers". 2013-08-13. Retrieved 2013-08-13. 
  20. ^ "Oilers acquire Steve Pinizzotto". Edmonton Oilers. 2014-01-17. Retrieved 2014-01-17. 
  21. ^ "Pinizzotto brings a spark just in time". Oklahoma City Barons. 2014-03-02. Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  22. ^ "Steve Pinizzotto impresses in first game with the Oilers organization". Edmonton Journal. 2014-01-18. Retrieved 2014-01-18. 
  23. ^
  24. ^ "Edmonton Oilers re-up depth forward Steve Pinizzotto to one-year extension". Edmonton Journal. 2014-06-12. Retrieved 2014-06-12. 
  25. ^ "HNIC – Don Cherry Coach's Corner November 22, 2014". 2014-11-22. Retrieved 2014-11-22. 
  26. ^ "IN DEPTH: Persistent Pinizzotto". Edmonton Oilers. 2014-11-23. Retrieved 2014-11-23. 
  27. ^ "PINIZZOTTO GOES GORDIE HOWE IN 1ST GAME". Sportsnet. 2014-11-19. Retrieved 2014-11-19. 
  28. ^ "Former Canuck Pinizzotto gets rare Howe hat trick". The Province. 2014-11-20. Retrieved 2014-11-20. 
  29. ^ "EHC Munchen contract Steve Pinizzotto" (in German). EHC München. 2015-05-26. Retrieved 2015-05-26. 
  30. ^ "Steve Pinizzotto out for season after shoulder surgery". The Vancouver Sun. 2011-11-15. Retrieved 2011-11-15. 
  31. ^ "Canucks re-sign Andrew Ebbett and Steve Pinizzotto". National Hockey League. 2012-07-02. Retrieved 2012-07-02. 
  32. ^ "Canucks recall Steve Pinizzotto from AHL's Wolves". CBC Sports. 2013-03-14. Retrieved 2013-03-14. 
  33. ^ "Steve Pinizzoto learned hard labour from his tin-bashing dad". Edmonton Journal. 2014-10-01. Retrieved 2014-10-01. 
  34. ^ "IN DEPTH: Persistent Pinizzotto". Edmonton Oilers. 2014-11-23. Retrieved 2014-11-23. 
  35. ^ "A Day with Pinizzotto". Network. 2012-07-29. Retrieved 2012-07-29. 
  36. ^ "Fans party with Cup". 2010-08-21. Retrieved 2010-08-21. 
  37. ^ "Pinizzotto & Naslund". 2012-07-28. Retrieved 2013-05-15. 
  38. ^ "The one about...the Naslund commercial". Fort Nucks. 2013-03-13. Retrieved 2012-07-28. 

External links[edit]