|6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)|
192 lb (87 kg)
|Born||December 6, 1986,|
Virginia, MN, USA
|NHL Draft||28th overall, 2005|
|Pro Career||2007 – present|
Matthew Norman Niskanen (born December 6, 1986) is an American professional ice hockey defenseman currently playing for the Pittsburgh Penguins in the National Hockey League. He was drafted by the Dallas Stars in the first round, 28th overall, in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft.
Niskanen attended the University of Minnesota Duluth. In 2005–06, his freshman season on the Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs hockey team, he recorded 14 points in 38 games. Before that, Niskanen played for the Virginia/Mountain Iron-Buhl boy's hockey team and helped bring the Blue Devils to their first state high school tournament appearance. During 2006–07, his sophomore season on the Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs hockey team, he recorded nine goals, twenty-two assists in thirty-nine games. Niskanen was named to the 2006–2007 All WCHA First Team, and the All WCHA academic Team.
Niskanen decided to leave college and turn pro after his sophomore season at UMD Bulldogs. On March 19, 2007 he signed an Amateur tryout contract with the Iowa Stars for the rest of the season; he later signed a three-year NHL contract with the Dallas Stars which began in 2007–08. He subsequently made the Stars' 2007–08 roster out of training camp.
Niskanen made his NHL regular season debut against the Colorado Avalanche on October 3, 2007. He recorded his first NHL points against the Boston Bruins two nights later with two assists. His first NHL goal came on October 29, 2007 against the San Jose Sharks. Niskanen had an excellent rookie start with the Stars, leading the team in plus/minus at mid-season, which resulted in his being invited to the Young Stars game during the 2008 NHL All-Star weekend.
- Matt Niskanen's NHL player profile
- Matt Niskanen's career stats at Eliteprospects.com
- Matt Niskanen's career stats at The Internet Hockey Database
|Dallas Stars first round draft pick
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