The Rochester Americans are pleased to announce that the team will induct goaltender Martin Biron into the Amerks Hall of Fame as the Class of 2018. Biron was unanimously selected by the Amerks Hall of Fame Committee and will be officially inducted as the 62nd member of the prestigious club on Friday, Feb. 16 when Rochester hosts the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at The Blue Cross Arena at 7:05 p.m. on Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino Legends Night.
Biron backstopped the Amerks for parts of four seasons from 1997 to 2001, during which he compiled a 59-32-9 career record with a .921 save percentage and a 2.36 goals-against, which ranks 12th among all goaltenders in franchise history.
“I am so truly honored and humbled to enter the Rochester Americans Hall of Fame,” said Biron. “When you think about all the amazing players and coaches that have been part of such an historical organization over the years, it’s an incredible feeling to be placed among them. The Amerks gave me my first taste of professional hockey and allowed me to have the success I did throughout my career in both the National Hockey League and American Hockey League. I wouldn’t be who I am today, even now in my current role with the Sabres, if it weren’t for those early years in Rochester. I am truly grateful and so proud of my time with the Amerks.”
A native of Lac-Saint-Charles, Quebec, Biron played his first full professional season with the Amerks during the 1997-98 campaign, posting a 14-18-6 record while appearing in 41 of Rochester’s 80 games that year. He also became just the second netminder in franchise history to record five shutouts in his first season with the team, a feat originally accomplished by Gerry McNeil in 1957-58, and that would soon be matched just two years later by former teammate Mika Noronen.
Biron’s best season as an Amerk came the next year during the 1998-99 campaign when he appeared in 52 of Rochester’s 80 games, finishing with a 36-13-3 overall record while setting the franchise mark for the lowest goals-against average (2.07) and highest save percentage (.930), the latter of which also tied an AHL record. For his efforts, Biron was named the recipient of the AHL’s top two goaltending awards – the Aldedge (Baz) Bastien Memorial Award, presented annually to the goaltender voted best at his position, and the Harry (Hap) Holmes Memorial Award, which recognizes a team’s goaltender(s) with the fewest number of goals-against per game who has appeared in at least 25 games during the regular season. He also represented Rochester at the 1999 AHL All-Star Game and would later be named to the AHL’s First All-Star Team at the conclusion of the regular season.
The former first-round pick of the Buffalo Sabres became just the second netminder in team history to post six shutouts in a single season that year, matching the then franchise record originally set by Amerks Hall of Famer Bobby Perreault in 1967-68.
Biron played his final season in Rochester in 2000-01 while also splitting time with the Buffalo Sabres, concluding his Amerks career with 2,761 saves and 13 shutouts in 103 games in the red, white and blue. His 13 shutouts are still the fourth-most among any Rochester goaltender in the 62-year history of the franchise.
After making 68 NHL appearances for the Buffalo Sabres between 1995 and 2001, Biron made a permanent jump to the NHL beginning in 2001-02 when he took over the starting goaltending duties for the Sabres. He finished the year with a career-best 2.22 goals-against average in 72 games for Buffalo, in addition to setting NHL career-highs in wins (28), saves (1,630) and shutouts (6).
After departing Buffalo midway through the 2006-07 season, Biron closed out his 16-year playing career with stops with Philadelphia, the New York Islanders and the New York Rangers. He retired following the 2013-14 NHL season with a 230-191-52 record and 28 career shutouts to go along with a 2.61 goals-against average and a .910 save percentage.
Biron currently serves as the Director of Goaltending for the Academy of Hockey at HarborCenter and is in his first season working alongside Brian Duff for all Sabres TV broadcasts on MSG.