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Eric Belanger

Eric Belanger

Team Number: 25
Birth Date: 12/16/1977
Height: 6'0''
Weight: 185lbs.
Position: Forward
More Info
TRADED TO WASHINGTON CAPITALS MARCH 2010 FOR DRAFT PICK.

At first glance, Minnesota Wild center Eric Belanger’s physique is more of that of a cross-country runner or Nordic skier: he stands at 5’11” and weighs just 187 pounds. Yet, Belanger is known for his aggressive skating, and what he may lack in “bulk”, he makes up for with smooth puck handling and single-minded determination during practices and games.

To really know Belanger, though, is to know his history. Eric Belanger was born on December 16, 1977 in Sherbrooke, Quebec. Sherbrooke is a larger Canadian city (pop. 147,427) that gave Belanger plenty of opportunities to train from an early age. Eric Belanger’s early hockey career had him jumping from team to team. By the time he was just 23, Belanger had already played with the Beauport Harfangs, Rimouski Océanic, Fredericton Canadiens, Springfield Falcons, Lowell Lock Monsters, and the Long Beach Ice Dogs. This team-hopping contributed to Eric Belanger’s ability to find his niche and work with a variety of players of all levels and abilities.

The NHL was Belanger’s next stop in 2000 when he joined the ranks of the Los Angeles Kings. Belanger played for the LA Kings until 2006-- his longest stint with a single team to date. In late 2006, Belanger was traded to the Carolina Hurricanes where he stayed for just a matter of months. On February 9, 2007, Belanger was traded to the Nashville Predators and the next day he was sent to the Atlanta Thrashers. By the end of 2007, Eric Belanger signed with the Minnesota Wild.

Once he arrived in Minnesota, Eric Belanger had mixed reviews. Due to a fractured toe, he was sidelined in March of 2008 and missed several games. Previous to his injury, however, Belanger was starting to make a name for himself. He recorded 13 goals and 24 assists for the Minnesota Wild; although this is down from his season record of 17 goals and 20 assists with the LA Knights in 2005, it is also due to his injury.

During the 2008-2009 season, Eric Belanger had 13 goals, including two in a single game against the Boston Bruins. This tied him for 206th overall in the NHL for season goals. He also had 13 assists and 36 points.

Eric Belanger is committed to the Minnesota Wild for at least another season. Let’s hope he can avoid injury and build off his 8 years of NHL experience to bring the Minnesota Wild a winning season and playoff berth.



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