PORTLAND, ME – January 3, 2020 – In November, Cumberland native Ted Hart became the first Maine-born player to suit up for the ECHL version of the Maine Mariners. Two months later, his older brother could become the second. On Friday, the Mariners announced the signing of 26 year old forward Brian Hart.
Brian is the middle brother of three in the Hart family, between 23-year-old Ted and 28 year-old Kevin Hart. Like Ted, Brian played at Greely High School and Phillips Exeter Academy, where he holds the all-time and single season scoring records. Also like Ted, Brian was an Ivy League student athlete, attending the rival of Ted’s Yale: Harvard University from 2012-2015. In the second round of the 2012 NHL Draft, before even starting college, Brian was selected by the Tampa Bay Lightning, 53rd overall.
Hart began his pro career playing 25 games for the AHL’s Syracuse Crunch in 2015-16. He also appeared in 36 games that season with the Greenville Swamp Rabbits of the ECHL. He totaled 13 goals and 4 assists between the two teams as a rookie. The following season, Hart again split the campaign between the AHL and ECHL, appearing in 33 games for the Crunch and 33 for the Kalamazoo Wings. He also played in seven playoff games for the Wings that season, and recorded four goals plus an assist. In 127 career North American pro games, Hart has 22 goals and 13 assists.
Hart went over to the United Kingdom’s Elite Ice Hockey League (EIHL) and played for the Dundee Stars for the previous two seasons. There, he averaged over 40 points a season, leading the team in goals with 23 in 2018-19, while also serving as an alternate captain. The eldest Hart brother, Kevin also played two seasons for Dundee prior to Brian’s time.