Little Flyer Brennan faces Flyers

Posted: October 02, 2010

Through the Buffalo Sabres' first four preseason games, rookie defenseman T.J. Brennan was given an opportunity to audition just once.

Last night, Sabres coach Lindy Ruff threw the 21-year-old Moorestown, N.J., native a bone.

Brennan didn't just dress against his hometown Flyers, Ruff put him in the starting lineup, having his name announced with the other Buffalo starters. We'd like to think the usual chants that echo after each visitor's name was a little quieter for Brennan at the Wells Fargo Center.

"I wasn't really expecting it," Brennan said. "You get out there and try and have a good first shift. You try not to read into it too much. But it was pretty cool, being able to see the rink from another angle. It was cool."

Brennan began his odyssey to the NHL in 2006, when he withdrew from Moorestown High before his senior year to play for the St. John's (Newfoundland) Fog Devils in the Quebec Major Junior League. After netting 41 points in 68 games as a rookie defenseman in the high-scoring league, Buffalo drafted him 31st overall in 2007.

The Philadelphia Little Flyers' product made the jump to pro hockey last season, posting 6 goals and 17 assists for the AHL's Portland Pirates.

This training camp, Brennan was able to study under the tutelage of fellow Sabres' first rounder Tyler Myers, who is one year younger. Myers picked up the Calder Trophy as the NHL's top rookie last season.

For now, Brennan is likely to head back to Portland - but not without a memory he won't soon forget.

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