“I’m fortunate because not everyone has an opportunity to be around hockey in that sense,” Primeau said. “I’ve grown up knowing great hockey players, so it wasn’t anything out of the ordinary, but it was great to meet [Richter] and a really huge and humbling honor.”
Primeau enjoyed one of the best seasons in Northeastern history. He put up a .933 save percentage, fifth in the nation and the best single-season mark in school history. Primeau’s 2.09 goals-against average ranks second all-time at Northeastern, only behind his 1.92 mark from last season. His 25 wins were the third-highest in the NCAA and tied for the most in a season in school history.
Primeau also led his team to both the Beanpot and Hockey East Championship.
“He gave his team a chance to win just about every night,” said John Vanbiesbrouck, a member of the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame, and the current assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey. “At the end of the day, consistency is what the position is all about. When your teammates know they have a chance they can take some risks because they know they have a guy who’s going to be there for them in goal.”
The memories are still fresh from the last time Primeau represented the U.S., as he helped the U.S. National Junior Team to a silver medal during the IIHF World Junior Championship that concluded in January. He won four games, posting a 1.61 goals-against average and a .937 save percentage during the tournament. Primeau also led the U.S. to a gold medal during the IIHF Under-18 Men’s World Championship in 2017.
“He’s earned this, and he’s really developed well through his time at Northeastern,” Vanbiesbrouck said. “He’s big, he’s quick, he’s reading plays better and he’s very well prepared.”
Primeau is also preparing to start his professional career. Following his season at Northeastern, Primeau, a 2017 seventh-round pick by the Montreal Canadiens, signed an entry-level contract with the Habs and will report to the team’s American Hockey League affiliate in Laval, Quebec.
Until then, Primeau plans to learn during his time with the U.S. Men’s National Team and the best hockey players in the world.
“It’s crazy and something special,” Primeau said. “I’m just excited to be able to represent the U.S. again. It’s not every day that you get to be around this kind of level, so I’m just going to try to soak it in as much as I can. Every time you represent the U.S. it’s an honor. It never gets old.”
Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.