|Born||March 31, 1985 (1985-03-31) |
Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
|Height||6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)|
|Weight||220 lb (100 kg; 15 st 10 lb)|
|New Jersey Devils|
San Jose Sharks
|NHL Draft||16th overall, 2003|
San Jose Sharks
Steve Bernier (born on March 31, 1985) is a Canadian professional ice hockey right winger currently with the New Jersey Devils of the National Hockey League (NHL).
Steve has previously played for the Florida Panthers, Buffalo Sabres, Vancouver Canucks, and the San Jose Sharks, who originally selected him 16th overall in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft.
Junior Hockey Career
After capturing the 2001 Air Canada Cup, while being named Tournament MVP, with the Gouverneurs de Ste-Foy, Steve was drafted first overall in the 2001 Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) Midget Draft.
Steve played his entire four-season major junior career with the Moncton Wildcats. In his rookie year, he led Moncton in goals and finished fourth among QMJHL rookies in overall scoring; he was named to the 2001–02 QMJHL All-Rookie Team.
Steve's most productive junior season came in his draft year, 2002–03, when he scored 49 goals and 101 points, ninth in league scoring. He was named to the QMJHL Second All-Star Team.
Going into the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, the San Jose Sharks traded their 21st, 66th and 107th selections in exchanged for the 16th overall position, with which they drafted Steve.
Upon being drafted, Steve played two more seasons with Moncton and was named once more to the QMJHL Second All-Star Team in 2003–04. Helping lead Moncton to the 2004 QMJHL Finals, he scored 7 goals and 10 assists in 20 playoff games.
However, the Wildcats were eliminated by Gatineau in five games. In his fourth and final junior season, in 2004–05, Steve tallied 71 points (tops in team scoring) and 114 penalty minutes in 68 games, but it marked the second straight season his stats had dropped.
Soon after being eliminated in the second round, the Sharks signed Steve to his first pro contract, a three-year deal.
Professional Hockey Career
Steve split his first professional season, 2005–06, between the Sharks and their American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Cleveland Barons. He scored 14 goals and added 13 assists in 39 games with the Sharks for a successful rookie season.
On November 12, 2005, Steve scored his first NHL goal against Marty Turco of the Dallas Stars. In the playoffs, he added one goal and 5 assists in 11 games, as San Jose was eliminated in the second round.
Midway through his sophomore season, Steve was sent back to the AHL after an 8–0 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes. However, he soon broke his toe and missed a month's worth of games.
After rehabilitation and 10 games with Worcester (San Jose's new AHL affiliate), Steve rejoined the Sharks in late February.
On February 26, at the 2007–08 trade dealine, Steve was sent to the Buffalo Sabres along with a 1st round draft pick in exchange for Brian Campbell and a seventh round pick.
The next day, in his Sabres debut, Steve scored two goals on his first two shots and later added an assist, helping Buffalo to an 8–4 win over the Nashville Predators. At the time, Thomas Vanek wore number 26 for the Sabres, so Bernier chose the number 56 instead.
As Steve became a restricted free agent at the end of the season, he was traded to the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for a second round draft pick in 2010 and a third round draft pick in 2009 (Los Angeles' selection).
While Steve was admittedly surprised with the trade, he expressed approval in moving to Vancouver. Four days later, he was extended a one-year, $2.5 million offer sheet by the St. Louis Blues, which the Canucks quickly matched.
Playing in his first season with Vancouver, Steve injured both his left shoulder and left toe after missing a check on defenceman Brett Lebda and hitting the boards on November 24, 2008, against the Detroit Red Wings. However, he was only briefly sidelined and, setting career-highs in assists and points, he was awarded the Fred J. Hume Award as the team's unsung hero.
Although Steve was seen at the start of the season as a promising candidate for the Canucks' top line with Henrik and Daniel Sedin, he settled into a third-line checking role with linemates Kyle Wellwood and Mason Raymond in the latter stages of the season.
Following the Canucks' second round elimination to the Chicago Blackhawks, Steve was re-signed to a two-year contract worth $4 million on May 14, 2009. In preparation for the 2009–10 season, Steve reported to training camp 15 pounds (6.8 kg) lighter.
On June 25, 2010, during the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, Steve was traded, along with Michael Grabner and the Canucks first round choice in the draft, the twenty-fifth selection (used to select Quinton Howden) to the Florida Panthers for Keith Ballard and Victor Oreskovich.
In November of 2010, Steve missed eight games with a right eye injury. Later in the season, he was placed on waivers by Florida on February 24, 2011, but went unclaimed. Remaining with Florida, he missed the final two games of the season with a shoulder injury, finishing with 15 points (5 goals and 10 assists) over 68 contests in 2010–11.
Set to become a restricted free agent in the off-season, Florida chose not to tender Steve a qualifying offer, giving him unrestricted status on July 1, 2011. Without a contract at the start of the NHL's training camp period, he was invited to the New Jersey Devils' training camp in September of 2011.
Several days before the start of the 2011–12 season, Steve was offered a two-way contract, but declined. Within a month, he accepted an AHL contract with New Jersey's minor league affiliate, the Albany Devils. He was later signed to a one-year, two way contract with the Devils on January 30, 2012.
In Game 6 of the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals, Steve received a 5 minute major penalty, and a game misconduct for boarding after hitting Los Angeles Kings defenseman Rob Scuderi from behind with 9:50 remaining in the first period.
The ensuing five minute major penalty led to three Kings goals (when a major penalty is assessed, the entire five-minute penalty must be served) and a commanding three-goal advantage over the Devils at the end of the first period.
The Kings went on to win the game 6–1, clinching the series and winning the franchise its first Stanley Cup.
|1998–99||Quebec AA Aces||QAHA||28||33||23||56||24||—||—||—||—||—|
|1999–00||Quebec AA Aces||QMJHL||26||12||23||35||42||—||—||—||—||—|
|2005–06||San Jose Sharks||NHL||39||14||13||27||35||11||1||5||6||8|
|2006–07||San Jose Sharks||NHL||62||15||16||31||29||11||0||1||1||2|
|2007–08||San Jose Sharks||NHL||59||13||10||23||62||—||—||—||—||—|
|2011–12||New Jersey Devils||NHL||32||1||5||6||16||24||2||5||7||27|
|2012–13||New Jersey Devils||NHL||47||8||7||15||17||—||—||—||—||—|
- Won the Air Canada Cup with the Gouverneurs de Ste-Foy in 2001.
- Named Air Canada Cup MVP in 2001.
- Named to the QMJHL All-Rookie Team in 2002.
- Named to the CHL Second All-Star Team in 2003.
- Named to the QMJHL Second All-Star Team in 2003 and 2004.
- Won the Fred J. Hume Award (Vancouver Canucks' unsung hero) in 2009.
|Competitor for Canada|
|IIHF World U18 Championships|
|Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament|
Steve made his first international appearance at the 2001 World U-17 Challenge with Team Quebec. He tallied 6 points in 6 games; Quebec failed to medal. At the under-18 level, he competed at the 2002 Eight Nations Tournament in Slovakia with Team Canada and captured gold.
During his second year of major junior with Moncton, Bernier competed in the 2003 World U18 Championships in Russia. He captured his second straight gold medal with Team Canada in a 3–0 win against Slovakia.
Steve recorded 8 points in 7 games, finishing second in team scoring behind Marc-Antoine Pouliot.
When he played for the Vancouver Canucks, Steve resided in Yaletown, an area of Downtown Vancouver.