Former University of Maine star Peter Ferraro said he has “never” been in a different organization away from his twin brother Chris.
The vast majority of the time, they’ve been on the same team and usually on the same line.
But pro hockey is a business, and when the Pittsburgh Penguins put Peter on waivers a couple of weeks ago, the New York Rangers reclaimed him and sent him to their AHL affiliate in Hartford.
Peter Ferraro was a first-round pick of the Rangers and Chris was a fourth-rounder. They were both waived by the Rangers and picked up by the Penguins just prior to this season.
Center Chris Ferraro has remained with the Penguins where he has two goals and four assists in 36 games. Right wing Peter had three goals and four assists in 29 games before being waived.
He said in the five games they played together in Pittsburgh when Jaromir Jagr was injured, “we were the top 5-on-5 line on the team.” They were on a line with Alex Hicks.
“Obviously, I want to continue playing with my brother,” said Peter. “We’d like to play together for the rest of our careers. That’s something to shoot for.”
Said Chris, “We do everything together, so obviously there’s something missing now.”
The brothers, who turn 25 on Saturday, were also separated briefly when Peter played for the U.S. Olympic team in 1994.
But the twins are dealing with their new situation.
“I was here before [in the Rangers organization], so I know what to expect,” said Peter, who entered Friday’s play with four goals and three assists in four games for the Hartford Wolfpack.
Peter admitted that he was a “little bit surprised” when he was waived.
“I was in and out of the lineup in Pittsburgh, but when players got injured and I stepped in, I played well and put up numbers when I had to,” said Peter, who played in only two games for the Rangers a year ago, but racked up 38 goals and 77 points in 75 games for Binghamton of the AHL.
“In my mind, I know I proved myself. I showed I can play at that level and have some sort of impact,” said Peter, who was grateful to the Penguins for giving him a chance to play in the NHL. “Somewhere down the line, I’ll have that opportunity again either with the Rangers or with another organization.”
He doesn’t expect that to happen this season because Ranger General Manager Neil Smith “told me to get a place in Hartford. That means something. That means they want me to stay here. But I’ll be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the year.”
Chris, whose contract also expires at the end of the year, is hopeful that he might be reunited with Peter again.
“It’s a little emotional, because we have that special bond,” Chris said. “But as long as we’re both playing hockey and doing what we love, we really don’t have time to think about things like that.”
Peter said he talks to his brother daily and intends to make the most of his stay in Hartford.
“It’s a good league and I’ve been fortunate enough to get a lot of ice time so I can put up some numbers. I’m happy about that. I’m not going to worry about something I can’t control,” said Peter, who nevertheless wants to be in the NHL next season.
“We love having him back,” said Hartford media relations director Kevin Kavanagh. “He’s an asset to any club, especially at this level.”
The Bloomberg News contributed to this report.