Not many NHLers can say that they’ve had a career the likes of Bernie Nicholls. With 475 goals and 1,209 points, a Stanley Cup ring as a member of 2012 Los Angeles Kings coaching staff and time on the ice with the likes of Wayne Gretzky, Luc Robitaille, Dave Taylor, Marcel Dionne and Chris Chelios, Nicholls did it all.
Drafted in the fourth round of the 1980 draft, Nicholls spent a season in junior and lit up the AHL with 41 goals in 55 games before getting a call-up to the Kings, where he scored 14 goals and 32 points in 22 games, lighting the spark on an eventual 16-year NHL career.
Nicholls was more than a flashy offensive threat during his career, though. A member of the Kings, Rangers, Oilers, Devils, Blackhawks and Sharks, Nicholls has played virtually every role a player can, from top line center to elder statesman counted on to play shutdown defense.
In this exclusive interview with Nicholls, listen to the master of the “Pumper-Nicholl” talk about his career, the changes in the game since his playing days, his thoughts on his place in hockey history and what he’s up to now with All Sports Market, a sports team stock market website where people can own stock in their favorite team. Nicholls even imparts some words of wisdom to this year’s draft class, letting them know what to expect mentally and physically once they get to the NHL level.
Listen in on the Conversation:
Over the past ten years as a working journalist, Patrick Hickey Jr. has covered the New York Islanders, New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils, as well as the Brooklyn Aces of the former EPHL, contributing pieces and/or holding Editorial positions at NBC, New York Sports Day, NY Sportscene Magazine and the New York Times. During that time, he has interviewed NHL stars the likes of Brendan Shanahan, Bernie Nicholls, Bob Probert, Martin Brodeur and Zach Parise. He is also the first winner of the New York Islanders Blog of the Year Award, for his work on TheDriveForFive.com in 2008.