Daily Collegian: Former UMass hockey player Conor Allen embraces NHL opportunity - UMass Athletics

Daily Collegian: Former UMass hockey player Conor Allen embraces NHL opportunity

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Nick Canelas had this piece in today's Daily Collegian on former UMass defenseman Conor Allen in his first full season of professional hockey:

It was just an ordinary Friday night.

Conor Allen was sitting on the couch in his Hartford, Conn., home, playing cards with a group of friends, when he received a phone call from an unfamiliar number around 10:30 p.m.

He answered suspiciously. Initially, he thought it was a prank call because he didn't recognize the voice on the other end. That mystery voice actually belonged to Ken Gernander, Allen's coach for the AHL's Hartford Wolf Pack.

Gernander wasn't just looking to chat, however. He had with him the most exciting news of the 23-year-old's hockey career: Allen was being called up to the New York Rangers.

Next thing he knew, he was on a flight to Washington, D.C., where the Rangers played the Capitals that night, to meet his new teammates.

"It was a weird feeling knowing I was getting called up," Allen said. "You try not to think about it. Everyone just tells you to take care of business in the AHL and if you do that the NHL will figure itself out.

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