Robbie Russo
Born (1993-02-15)February 15, 1993,
Westmont, Illinois, U.S.
6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
191 lb (87 kg; 13 st 9 lb)
Position Defense
Shoots Right
NHL team (P)
Cur. team
F. teams
Arizona Coyotes
Tucson Roadrunners (AHL)
Detroit Red Wings
NHL Draft 95th overall, 2011
New York Islanders
Playing career 2011–present

Robbie Victor Russo (born February 15, 1993) is an American ice hockey defenceman playing for the Tucson Roadrunners of the American Hockey League (AHL) whilst under contract with the Arizona Coyotes of the National Hockey League (NHL).

Russo was selected in the fourth round (95th overall) by the New York Islanders in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.

Playing career[edit | edit source]

Amateur[edit | edit source]

Russo played for the USA Hockey National Team Development Program during the 2009–10 and 2010–11 seasons. As a member of the USA Under-17 team in 2009–10, Russo recorded seven goals and 24 assists in 52 games. As a member of the USA Under-18 team in 2010–11, Russo served as team captain, where he ranked sixth in team scoring with four goals and 26 assists in 60 games.[1]

College[edit | edit source]

In 2011, Russo enrolled at the University of Notre Dame and skated four seasons with the NCAA Division I Fighting Irish men's ice hockey team. During his freshman season, Russo recorded four goals and 11 assists, in 40 games. Among CCHA rookies, Russo was tied for 15th in overall scoring and was the top freshmen defenseman in scoring with 15 points. He recorded his first career collegiate point with an assist on October 8, and recorded his first career collegiate goal on October 28, 2011. Following an outstanding rookie season, he was named to the 2011–12 CCHA All-Rookie Team, and named Notre Dame's rookie of the year.[1]

During his sophomore season, he led Fighting Irish defensemen in scoring with five goals and 18 assists in 41 games, and was second among CCHA defensemen with 23 points. He was named the CCHA Gladiator defensive player of the week for the week ending November 19, 2012, after recording two goals and an assist in a two-game sweep against Michigan. That marked the first time since February 3–4, 1978 that the Irish had won a series at Yost Ice Arena.[2] He helped lead Notre Dame to the 2013 CCHA Tournament championship.

During his junior season, Russo recorded four goals and 11 assists in 21 games, before being declared academically ineligible in January 2014.[3] He was named to the Shillelagh Tournament All-Tournament Team.[4]

During his senior season, Russo recorded 15 goals and 26 assists in 40 games. His 15 goals was tied for first, along with Joey LaLeggia, among all defenseman in goals scored, while his 41 points was ranked second, one point shy of Mike Reilly for the national league among all defenseman. Russo's 41 points were the most by a Hockey East defenseman since at least the 2000–01 season. Russo was named the Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week for the week ending December 8, 2014.[5] He was named to the Florida College Hockey Classic All-Tournament Team, after blocking four shots, and posting a +3 plus-minus during the tournament.[6]

On January 18, 2015, Russo recorded the only hat-trick in the nation by a defenseman, becoming the first Notre Dame defenseman to do so since Frank O'Brien on February 20, 1988. Russo was named the Hockey East Player of the Week for the week ending January 19, 2015.[7] On February 12, 2015, he was named a team captain.[8] Following an outstanding senior season, Russo was named to the 2014–15 Hockey East First All-Star Team, the East Second-Team All-American, and CCM Hockey All-American. Russo became the fifth Notre Dame defenseman to earn All-America honors and the first since Ian Cole in 2009.[9]

Professional[edit | edit source]

On August 16, 2015, Russo signed a two-year entry level contract with the Detroit Red Wings.[10] Russo was named the CCM/AHL Player of the Week for the week ending February 28, 2016. Russo recorded two goals and five assists, along with a plus-8 rating as the Grand Rapids Griffins finished the week a perfect 4–0. He became the second Griffins defenseman ever to earn the player of the week honor, following Clay Wilson on December 26, 2005.[11]

During the 2015–16 season, Russo recorded five goals and 34 assists in 65 games for the Griffins, while posting a league-leading plus-47 rating that is tied for the highest mark by an AHL player since 1993. Following an outstanding rookie season, he was named to the 2015–16 AHL All-Rookie Team, and the AHL Second All-Star Team.[12]

On March 6, 2017, Russo was recalled by the Detroit Red Wings. He made his NHL debut the following evening, on March 7, in a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Prior to being recalled, Russo recorded seven goals and 24 assists in 56 games for the Griffins.[13] Following the conclusion of the Red Wings season, Russo was assigned to the Griffins. Russo appeared in 19 games for the Red Wings, averaging 16:04 time on ice and recording 18 shots on goal, 24 hits and 13 blocked shots.[14] On September 5, 2017, the Red Wings signed Russo to a two-year contract extension.[15]

On June 24, 2018, the Red Wings traded Russo to the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for a conditional seventh-round draft pick in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft.[16] He spent the entirety of the 2018-19 season with the Coyotes' American League affiliate, the Tucson Roadrunners.

On June 5, 2019, the Coyotes re-signed Russo to a one-year, two-way contract extension.[17]

International play[edit | edit source]

Medal record
Competitor for Flag of the United States.png United States of America
Ice hockey
World U-17 Hockey Challenge
Gold 2010 Canada
IIHF World U18 Championship
Gold 2011 Germany

Russo represented the United States at the 2011 IIHF U18 Championships, where he was captain, and helped lead his team to a gold medal. He recorded one goal and seven assists in six games, including setting up the overtime game-winning goal in the gold medal game against Sweden. He was named one of Team USA's top three players of the tournament.[1]

Career statistics[edit | edit source]

Regular season and playoffs[edit | edit source]

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2009–10 U.S. National Development Team USHL 34 3 17 20 36
2010–11 U.S. National Development Team USHL 24 0 6 6 11
2011–12 Notre Dame CCHA 40 4 11 15 14
2012–13 Notre Dame CCHA 41 5 18 23 40
2013–14 Notre Dame HE 21 4 11 15 8
2014–15 Notre Dame HE 40 15 26 41 20
2015–16 Grand Rapids Griffins AHL 71 5 34 39 42 9 1 4 5 9
2016–17 Grand Rapids Griffins AHL 58 7 25 32 37 19 0 7 7 22
2016–17 Detroit Red Wings NHL 19 0 0 0 2
2017–18 Grand Rapids Griffins AHL 75 9 23 32 81 5 0 1 1 0
2018–19 Tucson Roadrunners AHL 67 6 33 39 32
2019–20 Tucson Roadrunners AHL 53 2 17 19 35
NHL totals 19 0 0 0 2

International[edit | edit source]

Year Team Event Result   GP G A Pts PIM
2010 United States U17 Gold medal icon.svg 6 3 2 5 4
2011 United States U18 Gold medal icon.svg 6 1 7 8 4
Junior totals 12 4 9 13 8

Awards and honors[edit | edit source]

Award Year
CCHA All-Rookie Team 2011–12 [18]
Hockey East First Team All-Star 2014–15 [19]
AHCA East Second-Team All-American 2014–15 [20]
CCM Hockey All-American 2014–15 [21]
Notre Dame Monogram Club Team MVP 2014–15 [22]
Nyrop Defensive Player of the Year 2014–15
All-Rookie Team 2015–16 [23]
Second All-Star Team 2015–16 [24]
Calder Cup (Grand Rapids Griffins) 2016–17 [25]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Robbie Russo Bio. CBS Interactive (August 16, 2015). Retrieved on August 16, 2015.
  2. Robbie Russo And Steven Summerhays Honored by the CCHA. CBS Interactive (November 19, 2012). Retrieved on November 19, 2012.
  3. Notre Dame defenseman Russo ruled academically ineligible. USCHO (January 19, 2014). Retrieved on January 19, 2014.
  4. It's Shillelagh Tournament Time. CBS Interactive (November 26, 2014). Retrieved on November 26, 2014.
  5. Robbie Russo Takes Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week Honors. CBS Interactive (December 8, 2014). Retrieved on December 8, 2014.
  6. Irish Fall To Lake Superior State, 2–1, In Florida College Hockey Classic Championship. CBS Interactive (December 29, 2014). Retrieved on December 29, 2014.
  7. Robbie Russo Named Hockey East Player of the Week. CBS Interactive (January 19, 2015). Retrieved on January 19, 2015.
  8. Robbie Russo Named CCM Hockey All-America. CBS Interactive (April 10, 2015). Retrieved on April 10, 2015.
  9. Hinostroza, Russo Named First-Team All-Hockey East. CBS Interactive (March 19, 2015). Retrieved on March 19, 2015.
  10. Khan, Ansar (August 16, 2015). Detroit Red Wings sign defenseman Robbie Russo, free agent from Notre Dame. MLive. Retrieved on August 16, 2015.
  11. Russo Named CCM/AHL Player of the Week. Grand Rapids Griffins (February 29, 2016). Retrieved on February 29, 2016.
  12. Russo named to AHL all-rookie team. Detroit Red Wings (April 6, 2016). Retrieved on April 6, 2016.
  13. Kujawa, Kyle (March 6, 2017). Red Wings recall Robbie Russo. Detroit Red Wings. Retrieved on March 6, 2017.
  14. Kujawa, Kyle (April 10, 2017). Red Wings assign four to Griffins. Detroit Red Wings. Retrieved on April 10, 2017.
  15. Kujawa, Kyle (September 5, 2017). Red Wings agree to terms with defenseman Robbie Russo. Detroit Red Wings. Retrieved on September 5, 2017.
  16. Kujawa, Kyle (June 24, 2018). Detroit Acquires Conditional Draft Pick From Arizona for Robbie Russo. Detroit Red Wings. Retrieved on June 25, 2018.
  17. Coyotes Sign Russo to One-Year Contract. Arizona Coyotes (June 5, 2019). Retrieved on June 9, 2019.
  18. Freshmen Defenseman Robbie Russo Selected to 2012 CCHA All-Rookie Team. CBS Interactive (March 5, 2012). Retrieved on March 5, 2012.
  19. Hockey East Honors All-Star Selections at 2015 Championship Banquet. Hockey East (March 19, 2015). Retrieved on March 19, 2015.
  20. Five schools net a pair of All-American selections. USCHO (April 10, 2015). Retrieved on April 10, 2015.
  21. Men's CCM Hockey Division I All-Americans Announced. ACHA (April 10, 2015). Retrieved on April 10, 2015.
  22. Hockey Hands Out Team Awards. CBS Interactive (April 19, 2015). Retrieved on April 19, 2015.
  23. Russo Named to 2015–16 AHL All-Rookie Team. Grand Rapids Griffins (April 6, 2016). Retrieved on April 6, 2016.
  24. Russo Named to 2015–16 AHL Second All-Star Team. Grand Rapids Griffins (April 7, 2016). Retrieved on April 7, 2016.
  25. Wakiji, Dana (June 13, 2017). Grand Rapids Griffins win Calder Cup at home. Detroit Red Wings. Retrieved on June 13, 2017.

External links[edit | edit source]

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