Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Local product Cullen to camp with Sabres

John Cullen, a veteran OHL goaltender and native of Hamburg, NY, has been invited to participate in the Sabres 2011 Summer Development Camp.

Cullen, 20, recently completed his third season of major-junior play as a member of the Windsor Spitfires. Arriving in a deadline deal from Sarnia to serve as back-up to Dallas prospect Jack Campbell, the 5'11, 175-pounder posted a 2.17 goals-against-average and a .924 save% through his 11 starts for the most dominating run of his junior career. In total, Cullen has collected 30 wins while managing a 3.35 GAA and .901 save% in a three-year Ontario League career that has included 90 starts and four different sweaters.

Lacking the larger frame of the modern butterfly goalie, Cullen relies less on the technical side of things by employing an unorthodox "stop the puck at all costs" approach. He's aggressive when challenging shooters and quite vocal when directing traffic in front of him.

Along with time spent playing for St. Francis High School, Cullen played with Maksymum Jr. B (Rochester) of the Empire League as a 16-year old in 2007-08 while earning a spot in the 2008 Bowman Cup at HSBC Arena. With his name surfacing through U.S selection camps, Cullen was named to the U.S. U18 squad that skated in the 2008 Memorial of Ivan Hlinka in Slovakia. The following season, Cullen gave up his NCAA eligibility by winning a job with the Niagara IceDogs where he played 30 games with Sabres 2008 draft pick Drew Schiestel before getting traded to Kingston.