Joseph Gambardella is a family man to his core.
He’s also one call away from becoming the next Staten Island native to play in the National Hockey League.
"The biggest thing to me," said Gambardella, an Eltingville resident, "is my parents, family, girlfriend, friends, coaches and trainers get credit for everything. Without any of them, I wouldn’t be here."
"Here" is Bakersfield, Calif., where the 24-year-old is skating in his second full professional season with the Condors, the American Hockey League affiliate of the Edmonton Oilers.
"Them" is the many people who’ve supported him in his quest to go from New York City’s least populous borough to hockey’s grandest stage.
Gambardella, a left-handed shooting forward, started skating when he was 3 years old, following in the footsteps of his older brother, Robert Jr.