Former Thunder Forward Lerg Scores Game Winner in NHL Debut
Former Thunder forward Bryan Lerg becomes the 12th player to play for the Thunder and debut in the NHL with the San Jose Sharks
The Stockton Thunder, owned by the Calgary Flames and proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Islanders and AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers, are honored to announce that former Thunder forward Bryan Lerg debuted in the NHL earlier tonight for the San Jose Sharks, becoming the 12th player to make his NHL debut after playing for the Thunder.
Lerg, 29, played 7 games for the Thunder in 2008-09, scoring 2 goals and 8 assists in the ECHL while playing the majority of his first full professional season with the Edmonton Oilers then AHL affiliate, the Springfield Falcons.
The Livonia, Michigan native scored his first pro goal while with the Thunder back on October 24, 2008 in a road contest against the Victoria Salmon Kings. Lerg had three multi-point games with Stockton including two, three-point nights, during his seven-game stint in the ECHL.
Tonight Lerg became the 12th player to make his NHL debut after playing for the Stockton Thunder and 566th former ECHL player to play at the top level when he suited up for the San Jose Sharks in a game against his former organization, the Oilers. Lerg would skate 11:32 and score his first NHL goal, a game winner, with just 2:42 left in the game to propel the Sharks past Edmonton in the 3-1 win.
Lerg follows Bryan Young (Edmonton), Liam Reddox (Edmonton), Troy Bodie (Anaheim), Tim Sestito (Edmonton), Devan Dubnyk (Edmonton), Ryan O’Marra (Edmonton), Colin McDonald (Edmonton), Milan Kytnar (Edmonton), Mark Arcobello (Edmonton), Brandon Davidson (Edmonton) and Tyler Bunz (Edmonton) as players who made their NHL debut after playing for the Thunder. Theo Peckham (Edmonton) suited up for a preseason game with the Thunder in 2007-08 but never played an official game for Stockton.
The Thunder have seen three players make their NHL debuts this season in Davidson (December 10), Bunz (April 2) and now Lerg. The ECHL has had 25 former alums debut in the NHL this season.
In total the Thunder have 25 players who have played in the NHL and for the ECHL side. Matt Foy (Minnesota), Sebastien Bisaillon (Edmonton), Damian Surma (Carolina), Colin Hemingway (St. Louis), Johan Motin (Edmonton), Alex Stalock (San Jose), Jason Morgan (Los Angeles), Philippe Cornet (Edmonton), Brayden Irwin (Toronto), Brian Foster (Florida) and current Thunder players Kent Simpson (Chicago) and Mario Larocque (Tampa Bay) have all played for the Thunder after making their NHL debuts.
The team returns to Stockton Arena for the final ever Stockton Thunder game on April 11, a 7:30 p.m. For tickets to the conclusion of the 10-year Thunder chapter, call (209) 373-1500 or visit StocktonThunder.com.
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