Born November 21, 1986 (age 25) in Denver, Colorado, USA
Goaltender for the Ottawa Senators
Bishop is kind of a big deal–at 6’7″, he is the tallest goalie to have ever played in the NHL. He spent his youth playing youth hockey in the St. Louis area, playing as a forward until age eight, and minded net for the NAHL’s Texas Tornado, leading them all the way to their championship title. In college at the University of Maine, he and the Black Bears went to the Frozen Four two years in a row, though they did lose both times. He’d been drafted in 2005 by the Blues and signed with them in 2008, being assigned to the Peoria Rivermen. Big Ben made a big splash right away: he got a fighting major in his second game out of just five that season as a Riverman!
Sarah Palin led to his NHL debut. That sounds nuts, but stay with me: a carpet had been laid down for her to walk on to drop the ceremonial puck before an October 2008 game of St. Louis vs. LA. Starting goalie Manny Lagace tripped over the carpet and was injured, so Bishop got the nod. Stranger than fiction… He still spent most of his time in Illinois, but was often called up when other goalies were injured, like in February 2011 when he earned his first shutout (against Edmonton). He signed a one-year deal with St. Louis in July 2011, but wouldn’t spend all of 2011-12 in the Midwest.
Craig Anderson, the Senators’ starting goalie, lacerated his hand in a kitchen mishap in February 2012 just as the trade deadline approached. Suddenly hungry for good goaltending, the Sens made a move and traded for Bishop. The Ottawa brass must’ve seen his record, at the time, of being the best netminder in the entire AHL. He seems to be keeping that up; his debut in Canada’s capital was a 7-3 Ottawa victory. Anderson’s hand is feeling better now, but still the Sens might want to hold onto Big Ben. He could serve them well in future.