Return of the Burg, Bears sign veteran defender Erik Burgdoerfer

A fan favorite in the chocolate and white has returned to Hershey, where he got his feet wet in the American Hockey League.

Erik is best known for his 2016 season with the Bears, where he played 74 games for Hershey, posting six goals and 14 assists, along with 59 penalty minutes.

During the 2015-16 season, the Bears made their way into the Calder Cup Finals, where they would then be swept by a bigger, faster Lake Erie Monsters. During that magical run, Erik posted just four assists but played in all 21 games.

Before coming to Hershey, Burgdoerfer got his career started in the EJHL with the New York Apple Core, where he played 45 games, while posting 16 points, including six goals.

After that season, Burgy would get into R.P.I. in the ECAC, where he would play four seasons. None of those seasons were much to write home about, except for maybe the 2008-09 season. Erik would only post three goals and two assists for five total points in 35 games, but he posted 106 penalty minutes.

After stints in two lower level leagues, Burgdoerfer made the jump to the ECHL, where he played in parts of five seasons with the now AHL Bakersfield Condors, under his soon to be Hershey Head Coach, Troy Mann.

Erik would play a season-high 71 games in the 2012-13 season. However, it would be the following season in 2013-14 where he would post career-high of 11 goals and 22 points.

Erik got his first AHL recall that season to the now defunct Oklahoma City Barons, where he would play in three games and post just one assist.

In the 2014-15 season, Burgdoerfer would be signed by Hershey to his first AHL contract. Erik would play three games that season in the ECHL with the Bears affiliate, the South Carolina Stingrays. He would then spend 58 games in Hershey, posting one goal and six assists for seven points and 58 penalty minutes.

After his stint with the Bears, Burgy would head to Rochester of the AHL and earn his first NHL recall to the Buffalo Sabres and play in two games. Erik has spent the last two seasons with the Ottawa Senators organization, where he would play 130 total regular season games for the Belleville Senators and six games for the Ottawa Senators.

Official release from the Hershey Bears:

The Hershey Bears announced today that the club has signed defenseman Erik Burgdoerfer to a one-year, AHL contract for the 2019-20 season. 

Burgdoerfer, 30, returns to Hershey after previously playing two seasons with the Bears from 2014-16. He enjoyed the best year of his AHL career in 2015-16 with the Chocolate and White, setting personal-bests in games played (74), goals (six), assists (14), and points (20). He helped Hershey to the 2016 Calder Cup Finals, playing in all 21 playoff games and registering four assists. 

The Abington, Pennsylvania native has appeared in 317 career AHL games with Oklahoma City, Hershey, Rochester, and Belleville, collecting 80 points (18 goals, 62 assists), 266 penalty minutes, and a +26 rating. The 6-foot-1, 208-pound defender has spent the last two seasons with the Belleville Senators, serving as alternate captain in 2017-18, and being named captain in 2018-19. Burgdoerfer scored 18 points (five goals, 13 assists) in 64 games last season with Belleville under the direction of Troy Mann, his former coach in Hershey. 

Burgdoerfer also played in four games last season for the NHL’s Ottawa Senators. Following his time with the Bears, the former RPI standout has skated in eight NHL games with Buffalo and Ottawa, notching an assist. After 480 ECHL and AHL games, he made his NHL debut on Dec. 5, 2016 for Buffalo in a 3-2 overtime loss to Washington. 

The veteran defender previously played for Hershey head coach Spencer Carbery in the 2014-15 season with the ECHL’s South Carolina Stingrays. Burgdoerfer appeared in three games with South Carolina before joining the Bears for the remainder of the season. 

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