PRINCETON, N.J. – Adam Hauser, who played in the ECHL in each of his first two seasons, made his National Hockey League debut with the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday. The 25-year-old, who made 18 saves in 50:49 of a 10-1 loss at Buffalo, becomes the 289th player to play in the NHL after playing in the ECHL and the 33rd former ECHL player to play his first NHL game this season.
The 6-foot-2 and 192-pound Hauser was recalled on Jan. 12 from Manchester of the American Hockey League where he is 14-8-2 with two shutouts, a goals against of 2.80 and a save percentage of .911 in 24 games.
Drafted in the third round (81st overall) by Edmonton in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft, Hauser began his career with Jackson in the ECHL in 2002-03 after four seasons at the University of Minnesota. He was 20-9-4 with Jackson and finished tied for the league lead with five shutouts while ranking third in goals-against average at 2.46 and sixth in save percentage at .916, twice being named Goaltender of the Week and being chosen to ECHL All-Star Game.
He began the 2003-04 season with Reading and was 3-0-1 with a shutout, a goals against of 1.71 and a save percentage of .930 in four games before being called up to Manchester. He was selected ECHL Goaltender of the Week after going 2-0-0 with a shutout, a goals against of 0.50 and a save percentage of .979 on opening weekend.
The Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League has affiliations with 25 of the 30 teams in the NHL and there are over 100 players on ECHL rosters under contract to an NHL team. There is one head coach, 12 assistant coaches, 13 referees and five linesmen currently in the NHL with ECHL experience. Former ECHL goaltenders have won the NHL Defensive Player of the Week award five times with David Aebischer, Chesapeake/Wheeling and Colorado (Jan. 9), Tomas Vokoun, Wheeling and Nashville (Dec. 5), Mike Morrison, Greenville and Edmonton (Nov. 28), Curtis Sanford, Peoria and St. Louis (Nov. 21) and Manny Legace, Richmond and Detroit (Nov. 1).
Chris Holt (Charlotte and New York Rangers) and Mike Morrison (Greenville and Edmonton) have played in both the ECHL and the NHL this season. Chris Beckford-Tseu of Alaska was called up and served as the backup goaltender for St. Louis on Dec. 17 while Maxime Daigneault of South Carolina was called up and served as the backup goaltender for Washington on Dec. 31 and Jan 1 and Frederic Cloutier of Pensacola was the backup goaltender for the New York Islanders on Jan. 6 and 7.
There have been 33 players in 2005-06 that have made their first NHL appearance since playing in the ECHL:
Evgeny Artyukhin (Tampa Bay on Oct. 20)
Adam Berkhoel (Atlanta on Oct. 15)
Derek Boogaard (Minnesota on Oct. 5)
Alexandre Burrows (Vancouver on Jan. 2)
Kevin Colley (New York Islanders on Oct. 27)
Ryan Craig (Tampa Bay on Dec. 17)
Brian Eklund (Tampa Bay on Nov. 8)
Michael Garnett (Atlanta on Oct. 12)
Trevor Gillies (Anaheim on Nov. 6)
Steven Goertzen (Columbus on Oct. 21)
Jeff Giuliano (Los Angeles on Nov. 5)
Josh Gratton (Philadelphia on Dec. 15)
Adam Hauser (Los Angeles on Jan. 14)
Timo Helbling (Tampa Bay on Oct. 5)
Colin Hemingway (St. Louis on Oct. 19)
Chris Holt (New York Rangers on Dec. 3)
Raitis Ivanans (Montreal on Oct. 8)
Greg Jacina (Florida on Nov. 12)
Connor James (Los Angeles on Jan. 7)
Zenon Konopka (Anaheim on Oct. 30)
Chad LaRose (Carolina on Dec. 6)
Jay Leach (Boston on Nov. 5)
Rob McVicar (Vancouver on Dec. 1)
Mike Morrison (Edmonton on Nov. 7)
Michel Ouellet (Pittsburgh on Nov. 22)
George Parros (Los Angeles on Oct. 5)
Geoff Platt (Columbus on Dec. 2)
Nolan Schaefer (San Jose on Oct. 26)
Martin St. Pierre (Chicago on Nov. 4)
David Steckel (Washington on Dec. 31)
Grant Stevenson (San Jose on Nov. 23)
Mark Streit (Montreal on Oct. 8)
Ole-Kristian Tollefsen (Columbus on Nov. 23)