NEW YORK – The HBO show Entourage is about the life of a Hollywood celebrity and his friends. But when the cast of the show held a premier party for the fifth season of the Emmy-nominated comedy, one of the stars of the night was a Hall of Fame hockey player.
Mike Bossy, the star from the New York Islanders championship dynasty, was an elusive but much-sought-after figure Wednesday night.
Doug Ellin, the creator and executive producer of the show, and Kevin Connolly, who stars on the show, are Long Island natives and life-long Islanders fans.
“Mike Bossy is rolling around here. For a diehard guy who went to 25, 30 games a year, I'm very excited to meet him."
-- Doug Ellin, the creator and executive producer of the HBO show Entourage
"Mike Bossy is rolling around here," said an excited Ellin. "For a diehard guy who went to 25, 30 games a year, I'm very excited to meet him."
Bossy wasn't the only NHL player walking the red carpet at the premier, held at the Ziegfeld Theater in Manhattan. New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur, New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist and Tampa Bay Lightning center Vincent Lecavalier also were on hand.
Bossy was invited to the premier by Connolly, who has done charity events with Bossy and the Islanders in the past.
"I'm just a fan more than anything, and I get great tickets to the games," said Connolly, who plays Eric Murphy on the show and is part of Entourage's entourage, playing manager to fictional movie star Vincent Chase, played by Adrian Grenier.
Bossy wasn't the only player the show's stars were looking forward to meeting. Jerry Ferrara, who plays Turtle, was hoping to see Lundqvist, the netminder for his favorite team.
"I heard he was coming, I'm psyched up," said Ferrara.
Lundqvist said he was just as happy to meet some of the stars from one of his favorite TV shows.
"I'm a big fan of the show," he said. "I never watch every Sunday but I try to do that. But I always buy the box set and watch all the episodes in about two days."
Ferrara said he and Connolly will talk trash about each other's favorite teams, and said that while he doesn't follow the Rangers as close as he used to, the Blueshirts always will hold a special place in his heart.
"I'm not into hockey as much as I once was," he said, "but it's still the first sport I loved."
Lecavalier was ready to return some of that love.
"I'm a big fan, watching it since the beginning," he said. "I was a year late, but once I started I caught up pretty fast. Everybody (on the team) watches the show, it's a great show. All my teammates are jealous I'm here tonight."
Ellin said he was just as happy to have some of his hockey heroes in the house.
"I love hockey and I'm a big fan of all those guys," he said, and added he'd love to have an episode where his characters go to a hockey game. "It would be great. We've talked about it. It would be awesome if we could figure out how to do it."
Ellin said one of his biggest thrills was playing golf last year, along with Connolly, Ferrara and Kevin Dillon (Johnny "Drama" Chase on the show), with Wayne Gretzky. But if he was going to cast someone from the NHL in an upcoming episode of Entourage, The Great One might not be his first choice.
"I've got to say Gretzky because I played golf with him," said Ellin, "but Mike Bossy, Trots (Bryan Trottier), Denis Potvin, all the old Islanders."
Contact Adam Kimelman at firstname.lastname@example.org.