We are now 39 days away from hearing Jeff Jimerson serenade us with the "Star Spangled Banner" and seeing Ryan Kesler's gorgeous face in a Ducks jersey as the Pens will face Anaheim Thursday, October 9th at 7:08PM at Consol Energy Center. Here we are at number 39 in the countdown with little to talk about. Penguins players to wear the number 39 sweater include Mike Needham, Peter Allen, Joel Bouchard, Jon Sim, Luca Caputi (again), and Brad Theissen. While Jon Sim was an "X-Generation" warrior and as fun as it would be to write about Luca Caputi and include the "Luca Caputi Rap", we decided to pick #BestInTheWorld defenseman Joël Bouchard.
During Bouchard's 7 games with the Penguins in 2002-2003, he recorded 1 assist and was a -6 (so Pittsburgh fans would hate him now because +/- is everything). Bouchard spent four years with Calgary, the team he was drafted to, then went on a nice little life journey playing for the Rangers, Predators, Devils, Dallas, Islanders, Pittsburgh (that's us), and Phoenix. Bouchard had two stints with the Rangers as he went back the following season after being acquired by the Penguins. Technically he was on 9 teams as after he left the Penguins the Buffalo Sabres signed him, however he did not play a game for them and was then claimed by the Rags. To summarize Bouchard's career as a Penguin, we lost Kovalev in the deal that brought him here but we also received a key component that helped us acquire Marc-Andre Fleury in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. So basically, Bouchard was here in a time when the team was shifting directions. From trading away Kovalev to signing Fleury, there was the "Bouchard Era." Stay tuned tomorrow for someone who's way better than Joël Bouchard IMO.
|Future Hall of Famer|