Posted by: Adventures in Pucking | November 1, 2011

Man of the Day 11/1: Kyle Okposo

Kyle Henry Erovre Okposo

Born April 16, 1988 (age 23) in St. Paul, Minnesota, USA

Right winger and alternate captain for the New York Islanders

Okposo, or Okie, or Harry Potter (more on that later) was born to a white mother and a Nigerian father who emigrated to America as a teenager and later earned his Ph.D. His family still lives in Minnesota where he grew up! After attending Shattuck-St. Mary’s, Okposo played a season with the USHL’s Des Moines Buccaneers, a very good season indeed because he was named MVP of the USHL playoffs and helped the team win their championship. After that, he was drafted seventh overall in the 2006 draft by the Islanders. However, he enrolled in the University of Minnesota and got on their team.

There were a lot of wingers on the team in his freshman year, so they put him at center and he grew rather used to it. He also played in the 2007 World Juniors before returning to the Gophers for another season. Well, part of another season; in December 2007 he announced he’d be leaving to head for the Island. Reportedly, there was some feeling among the Islanders, especially Garth Snow, that Minnesota wasn’t coaching him enough. While the Islanders’ coach then emphasized the importance of getting a degree, in this case Okposo was ready to go. He got on an entry-level contract and went to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, though he was called up to the big show for nine games, including his first goal: a powerplay goal scored on Martin Brodeur. Nice!

"Ha ha! We're awesome."

After this most recent season, he signed a 5-year contract to keep him in an Islanders sweater. He didn’t play as much this season because of a shoulder injury, although obviously they have a lot of faith in him on Long Island. I mean, he was named an alternate just last month! For the most recent season, he played 38 games, got 5 goals, 15 assists and had 40 penalty minutes. Now that he’s doing better, he should be on track to play more this season. Also, he’s referred to as Harry Potter because he’s been seen attending premieres of the movies and because his teammates tease him on Twitter sometimes using that nickname. But hey, a man who likes Harry Potter is a man with good taste. Plus, when Vicky went to a recent signing event, she got Okposo to sign something for me and that was really very sweet, unexpected and awesome.

Here's to a good season for Harry Potter!

-Emma


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