Tag Archives: Peoria Rivermen

Pascal Pelletier(23) Utica Comets

Pascal Pelletier

Undrafted 10th year center Pascal Pelletier(23) returned to North American hockey signing a one-year two-way deal with Vancouver Canucks for 2013/2014.

He spent the last three seasons in the Swiss elite league NLA, skating games for Langnau, putting up close to point-per-game numbers.

The strong skating, stocky 5’11” 196 lbs. forward was reassigned to expansion team Utica Comets and set a new career high assists with 40 in 69 AHL games.

His 62 points were also second highest of his pro career.

He appeared in 3 games with the parent club but failed to hit the score sheet. He’s played 16 total NHL games but has yet to register a point.

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Cade Fairchild(2) Portland Pirates

Cade Fairchild2

3rd year defenseman Cade Fairchild(2) was picked up in an AHL trade deadline deal by Phoenix Coyotes for future considerations and reassigned to their farm club, Portland Pirates.

Originally a St. Louis Blues‘ 4th round pick in the 2007 draft, he skated mostly with their minor league affiliates apart from 5 NHL games in his rookie season (one assist).

In a somewhat surprisingly move he was also sent down to the ECHL for a pair of contests for Kalamazoo Wings near the beginning of the current season.

The slightly small-ish looking 5’11” 178 lbs. blue liner has appeared in 150 AHL contests scoring 10 goals and 55 assists with a massive +30 rating.

He dished out his fair share of helpers in four years at University Of Minnesota.

Tbe 25-year old is set to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the current campaign after signing a one-year extension.

It will be interesting to see where he ends up playing in 2014/2015, but I doubt anyone will be surprised if he decides to take his talents overseas.

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Danny Syvret(25) Hartford Wolf Pack

Danny Syrvet

Hartford Wolf Pack 9th year veteran defenseman Danny Syvret(25) is quickly approaching his third straight 40-point AHL season (9 goals, 30 assists).

He was traded in the second season of his two-year deal with Philadelphia Flyers, his third contract with the team, to New York Rangers and reassigned to their farm club in Connecticut, where he’s played 67 contests in 2013/2014.

The stocky-looking 5’11” 205 lbs. d-man has skated in 59 NHL games, putting up a modest 3 goals and 4 assists but hasn’t paid a visit to the show since late 2011.

He’s considered a top-two pairing blue liner in the minors but given a full campaign may play a fairly strong role as a bottom six, seventh guy in the lineup more than watching from the sidelines.

See related: 12/22-10, 4/11-11, 8/9-11


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Tyson Strachan(5) Hershey Bears

Tyson Strachan

Big 6’3″ 225 lbs. 7th year defenseman Tyson Strachan(5) has been signed to an NHL contract and played in big league games since his sophomore campaign.

He is currently under a one-year two-way deal with Washington Capitals and has one assist but has mostly been on reassignment with farm club Hershey Bears, where he serves as an assistant captain.

He’s never been exactly the biggest point production d-man scoring only one goal and 13 helpers in 132 big league contests.

His point totals are better in the minors. This season in 49 AHL games he has a pair of markers with 15 assists, which could easily ascend to a career high by the end of 2013/2014. He also has a remarkable +13 rating.

Through 264 games he’s potted 15 goals and 70 assists.

Originally a Carolina Hurricanes‘ 5th round pick in the 2003 draft (#137 overall). He signed his first entry level deal with St. Louis Blues after attending Ohio State University and played in their organization for 4 years before moving on to Florida Panthers for a couple of seasons.

No doubt the 29-year old is an asset to any team he joins and will likely continue where he is or score another big league contract elsewhere, unless he decides to move his game overseas for more money.

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Chris Langkow(54) Bridgeport Sound tigers

Chris Langkow2

Undrafted center Chris Langkow(54) started his fourth pro season much like he did the three previous campaigns, signed for a one-year minor league deal to play in the ECHL.

He posted career highs in scoring last season with 20 goals and 41 points, first with Reading Royals, who he signed with in the off-season and then traded to South Carolina Stingrays.

The 6’1″ 185 lbs. forward re-signed for another campaign with the Stingrays but after getting off to a fast start was loaned to Bridgeport Sound Tigers for the second time in his career and made it stick.

He was first with the team for most of the year in 2011/2012 but only appeared in 7 games scoring a goal and 4 assists before succumbing to injury and being returned to Alaska Aces some 4 months later.

He won the Kelly Cup with the Aces in his rookie season and was impressive throughout.

The 24-year old recently signed an spc to play out the remainder of the regular season in southern Connecticut.

His grinding 4th line style of play works well with the young Bridgeport team and with AHL career highs in games played (35), goals (2) and assists (7) he has the ability to dot the score sheet.

It would be no surprise to see him score a higher league contract out of the gate in 2014/2015. After all, he is a Langkow.

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T.J. Hensick(28) Hartford Wolf Pack

TJ Hensick

7th year veteran center T.J. Hensick(28) returns to North American hockey after a half season away in the SHL with MODO.

He was released by the team after under-producing on the score sheet.

Signed to an AHL contract by Abbotsford Heat but then claimed off waivers by Hartford Wolf Pack, his last two pro years were spent with Peoria Rivermen, under a 2-way contract with St. Louis Blues.

The 5’9″ 195 lbs. forward was originally a Colorado Avalanche 3rd round pick in the 2005 draft (#88 overall) and played three seasons with the team and in their system.

He’s played 112 NHL games scoring 12 goals and 24 assists, last appearing in the league in 2012 with the Blues.

The 28-year old has skated in 332 minor league games with impressive numbers: 103 goals and 246 assists, making him more than a point-per-game player.

He had impressive numbers through his college career at University Of Michigan, winning a national championship in 2005 and being named a Hobey Baker Award finalist in two of his four season.

Where he goes next year is up for grabs but his contributions with his new team are already being noticed.

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Chris Bruton(16) Bridgeport Sound Tigers

Chris Bruton

Bridgeport Sound Tigers‘ 3rd year undrafted center Chris Bruton(16) was given a one-year, two-way NHL contract for 2013/2014 by New York Islanders to captain the young minor league affiliate squad.

Unfortunately he broke his hand early into the campaign and missed a month of action, leaving the team to field three assistants in his absence.

Upon his return, he has skated in 26 AHL games scoring a goal and an assist but is mostly counted on for his leadership and backing up his teammates when called upon.

He was team captain in his last season with Spokane Chiefs when they won both the Western Hockey League Championship and Memorial Cup. There was also an unfortunate incident that happened with the latter trophy.

At only 5’11” 205 lbs. he isn’t exactly the biggest guy out there but as his fighting record and time spent in the penalty box indicate, he welcomes any challenge.

One of those was after his junior career wrapped up, instead of turning pro immediately he decided to attend Acadia University.

After three years in school he signed his first contract with Alaska Aces after attending training camp with Peoria Rivermen but on his second loan to the club inked a deal in the higher league and re-signed for a 2012/2013.

The 26-year old definitely seems to be enjoying his time as mentor and could be headed for a nice coaching career once he’s ready to step off the ice.

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Akim Aliu(78) Hartford Wolf Pack

Akim Aliu1

5th year right wing Akim Aliu(78) is a bit of an enigma.

Originally a Chicago Blackhawks‘ 2nd round pick in the 2007 draft (#56 overall), the rough and tough forward has only played in 7 NHL games while under contract with Calgary Flames, who picked up the last year of his entry level contract, then qualified him for another season.

In his first pair of big league games he notched a pair of goals and an assist but through his next five contests in last year’s lockout shortened season he failed to connect with the score sheet.

The 6’4″ 225 lbs. power forward spent most of his time with farm club Abbotsford Heat, where in 84 games he’s collected a sparse 14 goals and 11 assists with an unsettling -20 rating.

Through 214 AHL contests his point totals are surprisingly low.

It’s fairly well documented that the still young 24-year old has temper and attitude problems, which probably has a lot to do with his limited success.

He started the current campaign on a try-out contract with Hamilton Bulldogs but was released after 14 games.

Picked up a month later by a struggling Hartford Wolf Pack, in a pair of appearances he scored his first tally with the team, has one fight and unloaded 5 shots on net.

He seems to fit with the team pretty well but without a sizable increase of offense production, it seems unlikely he’ll be given an spc to stay through the regular season.

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Carl Sneep(4) Idaho Steelheads

Carl Sneep

4th year, former Pittsburgh Penguins‘ 2nd round pick in the 2006 draft (#32 overall), towering defenseman Carl Sneep(4) somewhat surprisingly signs a one-year deal with Idaho Steelheads for 2013/2014.

He was originally signed to a 2-year entry level deal in which he appeared in his only NHL game and even recorded his first big league point, an assist. He also suffered injuries that limited his play in his sophomore campaign.

The 6’3″ 220 lbs. blue liner was extended for another season but something seemed to go amiss as he was inserted into the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins‘ lineup for a mere one appearance and spent most of his time watching from the stands before being reassigned to Wheeling Nailers, where he skated in 29 games before being dished to Dallas Stars.

He played 25 games with Texas Stars and received one recall but did not skate with the parent club and was once again bounced on loan late in the season to Peoria Riverman.

Not surprising, his point totals suffered, probably from changing addresses so much but he was never really viewed as a big point-getter since high school hockey.

He’s more of a big shutdown d-man that is tough to play against and holds a highly accountable +28 rating in 133 AHL games; and added another +12 in 29 ECHL games, but also was able to put up some marks on the score sheet (3 goals, 12 assists).

With his big frame though, he could easily put a bit more punishing grit into his style of play.

In four years with Boston College Eagles he was a part of two national championship teams.

Joining Idaho may be a strategic move for the 25-year old, as it would be no surprise to see him attend affiliate Texas Stars‘ training camp, rejoining the team and log some miles between the two western states.

See related: 12/18-11.

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Brennan Evans(44) Grand Rapids Griffins

Brennan Evans

11th year defenseman Brennan Evans(44) returns to 2013 Calder Cup Champions Grand Rapids Griffins for another season, signing a 1-year extension to stay with the team. They wasted no time to get him back into the fold.

He has played in a whopping 712 AHL games with 7 different clubs notching 14 goals, 93 assists and a highly accountable +23 rating often while under NHL contract but has never appeared in the big league.

The imposing 6’4″ 230 lbs. blue liner has yet to score over 20 points in a season but he’s been part of the triple digit penalty minutes club since his third year in the pros.

Almost ironically he put up better numbers in the postseason last year (2 goals, 6 assists in 24 contests) than he did in the entire 2012/2013.

At 31-years old, he will in all likelihood reach the elite group of skaters to play in 1000 AHL games but even if he comes up a bit short, he will always be able to look back on a great hockey career.

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