Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- Brian Bonin
As a scoring star at White Bear Lake high school in Minnesota, Brian Bonin had aspirations of one day making it to the NHL. The fact he was selected by the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1992 buoyed his spirits even further. However, he realized that as a ninth-round pick, chosen 211th overall, he would be considered a long-shot at best. Rather than toil in the minors hoping to improve, Bonin opted for the educational route, enrolling at the University of Minnesota, which has produced many excellent players over the years, some who have gone to have very productive NHL careers.

Bonin played four years at the University of Minnesota and improved his offensive statistics each year and earned a plethora of awards including being named to the WCHA and NCAA First All-Star Team in 1995 and 1996; the WCHA Player of the Year in 1996; and most notably was the 1996 Hobey Baker recipient as the top player in NCAA hockey. He also represented the United States at the 1996 World Championships.

Despite the tremendous achievements in his NCAA career, he was only able to crack the Pittsburgh Penguins lineup for five games in 1998-99. He has been a career minor-leaguer but thought he may have a second chance at earning a full-time NHL roster spot when he signed with the Minnesota Wild in 2000. However, he lasted just seven games with the team before being released. He is now out of professional hockey having not received offers from any of the other NHL teams.


REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM
1991-92 White Bear Lake Bears High-MN 23 22 35 57 8
1992-93 University of Minnesota WCHA 38 10 18 28 10
1993-94 University of Minnesota WCHA 42 24 20 44 14
1994-95 University of Minnesota WCHA 44 32 31 63 28
1995-96 University of Minnesota WCHA 42 34 47 81 30
1995-96 United States WC-A 8 1 0 1 2
1996-97 Cleveland Lumberjacks IHL 60 13 26 39 18 1 1 0 1 0
1997-98 Syracuse Crunch AHL 67 31 38 69 46 -4 5 1 3 4 6
1998-99 Pittsburgh Penguins NHL 5 0 0 0 0 -2 3 0 0 0 0
1998-99 Kansas City Blades IHL 19 2 5 7 10 -10
1998-99 Adirondack Red Wings AHL 54 19 16 35 31 -14 2 0 0 0 0
1999-00 Syracuse Crunch AHL 67 19 28 47 20 -7 4 0 1 1 0
2000-01 Minnesota Wild NHL 7 0 0 0 0 -3
2000-01 Cleveland Lumberjacks IHL 72 35 42 77 45 +11 4 2 0 2 0
2001-02 SCL Tigers Langnau Swiss 39 20 17 37 28 8 4 11 15 0
2002-03 SCL Tigers Langnau Swiss 44 15 24 39 24
NHL Totals 12 0 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 0


Minnesota High School - Player of the Year (1992)
WCHA First All-Star Team (1995, 1996)
WCHA - Player of the Year (1995, 1996)
NCAA West First All-American Team (1995, 1996)
Hobey Baker Memorial Award (Top U.S. Collegiate Player) (1996)
IHL Second All-Star Team (2001)
Signed as a free agent by Vancouver, September 9, 1999. Signed as a free agent by Minnesota, July 6, 2000. Signed as a free agent by Worcester (AHL), December 17, 2004.