With their first round pick in the 2012 NHL Draft, the New Jersey Devils selected center Stefan Matteau, son of NHL veteran Stephane Matteau. The same Stephane Matteau, in fact, who had the game-winning goal that knocked the Devils out of the 1994 Stanley Cup playoffs. The irony wasn't lost on the son:
"I met with the Devils a few times, but obviously knowing the history of my name, I guess it's surprising," Matteau said. "But I couldn't be more thrilled."
The 6-foot-1, 210-pound Matteau has earned praise for his physicality, something he thinks makes him a great fit for the Devils:
"Just their physicality and the way they never stopped," Matteau said. "The Final was a tough go, but they still didn't back down and that's how I play. I go hard to the end and it's a good fit for me."
"He was a player we wanted, it was a style of player we needed, it was a perfect fit and we're thrilled to have him and he's thrilled to be with us."
"He's big, he's strong, he's aggressive, he's an excellent skater. Not to demean his father, who broke our hearts one year, but he's a better skater than his father, he's well-schooled in hockey, he understands the professional hockey life. He's lived it his whole life. We're very happy to welcome him to our family."
As with all prospects Matteau has a lot of development to go through, but there's no doubt that Devils fans are wondering if the son might be able to do for them what the father did against them.