The Boston Bruins have signed Christian Hanson to a one-year contract, and if that name sounds familiar, it's because he is the son of Dave Hanson of "Slap Shot" fame. As a Bruins fan, I like this signing and I am starting to notice a pattern as well.
Hanson's dad was an actual player in the NHL and WHA during the 1970s. He played defense, but his son is a center. Most recently, the younger Hanson was with the Washington Capitals organization, though he played for the Hershey Bears. In this past season, he scored 10 goals, added 11 assists and got 42 penalty minutes. Sure, that's not like his dad's 1978-79 season, in which he put together 28 points and 212 penalty minutes, but that's alright.
Hanson has some prior experience in the NHL as well. When he was with the Toronto Maple Leafs, though he spent most of his time with the Toronto Marlies, he did get called up sometimes, like for 31 games in 2009-10. In general, 2010 was a good year for him: he went to the World Championship to represent America and to the AHL All-Star Game too. Before he was in the pro leagues, he spent four years with the University of Notre Dame.
Hanson is an interesting signing. Most likely, he'll go to the Providence Bruins, where his services could be of greater use in the short term. He could try to challenge for a spot with Boston, though, along with players like Carter Camper, Jared Knight and Ryan Spooner. If this challenge is unsuccessful, Providence may use his skill set as part of a larger effort to improve and make the playoffs, something they haven't done since 2009.
Another recent Bruins signing, Chris Bourque, is like Hanson in a few key ways: he has a famous last name and he played for Hershey last season. Now the teammates are reunited! This is an interesting pattern. Are there any other famous hockey sons out there looking to come into the organization?
All joking aside, these two became part of the Bruins for a reason. They have talents and general manager Peter Chiarelli surely knows that they might fit in well somewhere in the system. I know I would really enjoy seeing Hanson and Bourque suit up for Boston at some point in the future because it would certainly give people something interesting to discuss.
Emma Harger is a Boston Bruins fan who also enjoys the movie "Slap Shot."
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