Clarkson University goalie Cody Rosen was home in Kingston, Ontario, sitting on his couch watching World Cup soccer on television Saturday when he received a telephone call from New York Islanders general manager Garth Snow.
Snow was calling to inform Rosen that his team had selected him with its seventh-round pick in the National Hockey League draft.
Rosen, however, did not think he was talking to Snow and thought it was one of his friends making a prank call.
After playing just 20 minutes all year in his first season at Clarkson, and serving as a backup in his junior stop with the Kingston (Ontario) Voyageurs the previous year, Rosen knew he was not on many draft lists.
But his father, Gregg, ran back and checked on a computer and quickly informed his son that he indeed had been picked by the Islanders.
"I feel like it's a miracle pick," said Rosen, who will turn 20 on Sept. 27. "I'm really happy it happened. It gives me huge motivation to keep working hard. It's a great honor, but it's not the final goal.
"I had no idea. I didn't talk to anybody (before the draft) and nobody had talked to me. It's the most unbelievable feeling."
Rosen, who is 5-foot-11, 180 pounds, was selected by Snow because the Islanders GM saw many similarities to his own beginnings.
Like Rosen, Snow was a third-string goalie early in his college career at Maine. But he went on to help the Black Bears to a national title in the 1992-93 season, as the team finished 42-1-2.
"He told me he battled hard and had a good work ethic and his hard work paid off," Rosen said. "It's very surprising. People usually have to have outstanding seasons to get drafted. This year at Clarkson was a learning curve for me. I felt I had a great year at Clarkson learning and developing behind (goalies Paul Karpowich and Richie LaVeau). I tried to model my game after (Karpowich) and keep working that way."
Like Rosen, Clarkson coach George Roll was surprised to see the selection.
"He's worked hard," Roll said. "He's improved and he's certainly made some strides. Time will tell whether or not he can move up the depth ladder here. He has himself in better condition and does the things necessary. Last year was more of a learning experience for him, and he did grow as a player. Now he has to take the next step."
The selection has already caused Rosen to alter some of his plans. He will miss Clarkson's annual summer hockey reunion and golf tournament the second weekend of July in order to attend the Islanders summer rookie camp.
"It's nice to know that someone out there thinks your hard work and dedication will pay off somewhere," Rosen said. "I know the Islanders organization will keep an eye on me and back me throughout my Clarkson career."