Born in Brockton, Massachusetts, Kevin Stevens had to make a tough choice between his two favorite sports, baseball and hockey. His first love was baseball. As a kid he played catcher, and while attending Boston College he was good enough behind the plate to win tryouts with the Toronto Blue Jays and the Philadelphia Phillies organizations. At 6'3 " and 217 pounds?and by his own admission not a great hitter, Stevens went for hockey. But he was a low draft pick, chosen 108th overall in the sixth round by Los Angeles. Soon after draft day, Stevens was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Bouncing around to different teams and the minors would become one of the common elements of his career in hockey. All in all, he has been with Pittsburgh, Boston, the New York Rangers and Los Angeles in the NHL.
He also played for Team USA in the 1988 Olympics in Calgary. During that time, fans saw a big improvement in his performance under U.S. Olympic coach Herb Brooks' power skating program. Indeed, in his first game for Pittsburgh after the Games, Stevens scored his first career goal. During his first couple of seasons, Stevens alternated between Muskegon of the IHL and Pittsburgh, going up and down a total of four times in his second season.
Stevens' game really came together in Pittsburgh and the 1991-92 season was especially significant, as he finished the year behind only Mario Lemieux in scoring. Amazingly, Stevens never went more than three games without a point all season. That year and the year after, the Penguins won the Stanley Cup. Stevens had four straight 40-goal seasons with the Pens and formed the core of a powerhouse team that included Jaromir Jagr and Ron Francis. With Lemieux off the ice for most of the 1993-94 season due to injuries and surgery, Stevens gained the spotlight.
In the end, things did work in his favor for a little while, anyway. Stevens was traded to Boston for the 1995-96 season. However, he only stayed long enough to play 41 games in Beantown before he was traded once again, this time to Los Angeles. In 1997 Stevens was traded yet again, to the New York Rangers, where he remained for three years. He became one of the stars on the team after Wayne Gretzky retired in 1999. After some off-ice problems Stevens signed with the Philadelphia Flyers in July 2000 as a free agent.