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Five former members of USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program are battling in the NHL Stanley Cup Final this year. This is the first ever Stanley Cup Final trip for the Western Conference winning Nashville Predators, while the Eastern Conference Pittsburgh Penguins, are looking to repeat as champions.
The Penguins host four of the NTDP alumni in their roster. Phil Kessel (2003-05/Madison, Wis.), Ian Cole (2005-07/Ann Arbor, Mich.) and Bryan Rust (2008-10/Pontiac, Mich.) are all current members, while also being a part of the 2016 Stanley Cup champion team. Ron Hainsey (1997-99/Bolton, Conn.) rounds out the group after being traded to Pittsburgh in late-February. Each of the four players tallied an assist for the Penguins in game two in Pittsburgh on Wednesday.
Left Wing, Colin Wilson (2005-2007/Greenwich, Conn.), is the lone NTDP alum playing for the Predators. He is making his first appearance in the Stanley Cup Final.
Game three of the Stanley Cup Final will be played Saturday, June 3rd at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. The Penguins currently lead the series 2-0.