AYER — Josh Dolan, a hockey super fan and comedian, has begun to make his way into the spotlight as he launches his original show “Breakfast with a Bruin.”
The show is hosted by Dolan himself as he and a former or current Boston Bruins player talk about a variety of topics over coffee and breakfast at local restaurants.
“It’s like what everyone wonders what their favorite Boston Bruins celebrities talk about when they hang out and no one is around,” Dolan said.
The show takes a comedic spin and highlights genuine conversations between Dolan and the player.
“I never thought that I’d make it this far working with people I admired as a kid,” Dolan said. “I now consider them friends and some are even my best friends like Lyndon Byers.”
The show has featured players including Byers, Reggie Lemelin and Ken Hodge Jr.
“I would stand in line to get these guys’ autographs and now they’re showing up to be on a show I created,” Dolan said.
Dolan and his production team have already produced three episodes and will begin producing them weekly once the hockey season begins.
“We filmed the pilots with some Bruins alumni over a year and a half ago. Since then it’s just been working with sponsors and expanding the idea,” Dolan said.
The show has received attention from other Boston sports teams and, according to Dolan, the New England Patriots has shown interest in working to produce a similar show with him once the hockey season is over.
“My idea has become a reality and I’m so lucky,” Dolan said.
Dolan has decided not to approach big networks with the show and instead will air it online at breakfastwithabruin.com and on the Boston Bruins alumni website.
“If the show was housed on something like NESN or NBC Sports, we’d have to pay for advertising,” Dolan said. “Also, not everyone has those channels but pretty much everyone has the Internet so we can reach a lot more people like that,” Dolan said.
Always the shy kid in the class, Dolan admits he had a fear of public speaking and never felt confident when doing so. His love for movies helped him overcome that.
“I liked how comedy and movies could bring out emotion in people to be happy or bring tears. It really inspired me,” Dolan said.
At a young age he spent time watching hockey. He dreamed of becoming a professional hockey player but when he realized his goal would be difficult to attain he decided to combine his two loves — hockey and comedy.
“I wanted to be a part of hockey, even if I couldn’t play at a professional level, and comedy was my second passion in life,” Dolan said.
Dolan became involved with the Boston Bruins through Rick Middleton, his longtime friend. Dolan and Middleton had a mutual friend who was diagnosed with cancer and they wanted to do something to relieve the cost of her treatment.
“I knew the Bruins did a lot of alumni games for charity so I brought it up to him and he thought it was great,” Dolan said.
Dolan and the Bruins Alumni Foundation helped organize several charity hockey games with his team, the Boston Comedy All-Stars, to raise money for cancer. Comics Dolan recruited to play in the game included Lenny Clarke, Ken Rogerson, and Tony V.
“I was just trying to use the skills I had and I knew I had all these hands in different places. I wanted to find a way to put it to use,” Dolan said.
Shortly after, he began working at WAAF on The Hill-Man morning show. While working at the station, he came up with the idea to produce a “where are they now” podcast highlighting the lives of Boston Bruins alumni, which led to the creation of “Breakfast with a Bruin.”
“I’m not done and I’m not satisfied with where I am. I want to keep moving forward,” Dolan said.