The Lincoln Stars announced today that they have acquired defenseman Robert McCollum from the Kenai River Brown Bears of the North American Hockey League (NAHL) in exchange for future considerations.
"I'm glad to be here, I'm super excited," McCollum said. "I'm just happy for the opportunity and I'm going to try and make the most of it while I'm here."
McCollum, 20, has posted 13 points (three goals, ten assists) in 25 games so far this season with the Brown Bears. He spent the 2018-19 campaign playing in the NAHL, the Super International Junior Hockey League (SIJHL) and the Ontario Junior Hockey League (OJHL).
"I'd like to say I'm a strong two-way defenseman, good skater, I could move pucks up the ice well," McCollum remarked. "I don't mind hopping up in the offensive zone, either."
McCollum likens his game to Oliver Ekman-Larsson of the Arizona Coyotes, citing his ability to play responsibly in all three zones.
The Thunder Bay, ON native hails from a city that has produced several NHLers like Alex Delvecchio and Eric Staal. However, thanks to a personal connection, Robert Bortuzzo stands out as a player McCollum has looked up to throughout his life.
"My mom's a hairdresser and she's done his hair since he was a kid," McCollum explained. "He's also by the house in the summer and he's a great guy and a great role model."
Almost 773 miles away from his hometown, McCollum is aware that Lincoln has stood out as a hotbed for junior hockey over the last two decades.
"I heard Lincoln is an unbelievable place to play in, [they have] die-hard fans which I love," McCollum noted. "I'm excited to see what the Ice Box is like on a game day."
The Stars take on the Sioux City Musketeers tonight at the Tyson Events Center at 7:05 p.m.! Listen online at MIXLR or watch the game on HockeyTV!