For the month of April, we look back on Kyle Konin, a 1998 birth year goaltender from West Kingston, RI. The six-foot netminder took a unique route to the EHL that featured stops in New England Prep School, the NA3HL, and the NAHL, eventually landing with both the New Hampshire Avalanche and the Vermont Lumberjacks.
“Playing in the EHL was a great fit for me coming off of a season where I split between the NA3HL and NAHL, where the NA3 wasn’t challenging enough and I wasn’t quite ready to succeed in the NAHL. The EHL provided a competitive league with challenging competition and allowed me to find success,” said Konin.
During his time with the Lumberjacks, Konin posted a stellar 2.04 GAA and a .904 Save Percentage.
Following his time in the EHL, Konin matriculated at ACHA Grand Valley State, where he would play for two seasons. However, It was a unique set of circumstances that allowed him the chance of a lifetime.
“When COVID initially broke out I left school and moved in with my parents who retired down in Tampa, [Florida]," added Konin. "The Lightning needed a goalie to help out with practices and skates so I got connected with them pretty quick and got offered the position to be Tampa’s emergency back up goalie.
Later that year his dream became a reality when in December, Jordan Binnington of the Blues tested positive for COVID during their road-trip to Tampa and Konin got the call. Konin then led the team on the ice during warmups and fulfilled a lifelong dream of dressing for an NHL game.
Looking back on his amateur hockey career, and now having dressed for an NHL game Konin gave the following advice to younger athletes.
“My advice to players playing in the EHL would just be to be patient and enjoy the process.” concluded Konin. “I think everyone is so worried about college commitments or moving to higher leagues, but at the end of the day the coaches and scouts will help take care of those details. Just give it your all and enjoy everyday with your teammates and the memories, because it goes by fast. One day you’ll look back and junior hockey will hold some of the best memories of your entire life."
The EHL takes great pride in players such as Kyle Konin for helping them reach their goals and fulfilling our league motto -- With every player comes a different path and next step. Whether it's college hockey or climbing the junior ranks, the EHL and the EHLP provide all of our players with the resources to improve their game and keep climbing in their respective journeys.
Every story is different, and we're ready to help you write the next chapter in yours.
Next Stop, The #EShow