Tag Archives: ECHL

FUEHRING: SWAMP RABBITS AGREE TO TERMS WITH ALDERSON

AldersonSWAMP RABBITS AGREE TO TERMS WITH ALDERSON

Fourth-year forward notched 27 points in 41 games with Reading last season

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Swamp Rabbits

Greenville, SC The Greenville Swamp Rabbits, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, today announced the team has agreed to terms with forward Brandon Alderson for the 2016-17 season.

“Brandon is a big body and he can skate very well,” Head Coach Brian Gratz said. “With his speed and offensive ability, he will provide us with another offensive threat who can be effective at both ends of the ice.”

Alderson, 24, spent each of the last three seasons in the Philadelphia Flyers organization, splitting time between their ECHL and American Hockey League affiliates. Last season, Alderson notched a career-high 27 points (11g, 26a) in 41 regular-season games with the Reading Royals and added 12 points (8g, 4a) in 14 playoff contests. He also recorded one assist and six penalty minutes in 18 games with the AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms.

“I’m very excited to join Greenville, I’ve heard nothing but good things from friends that have been former players there,” said Alderson. “From the city to the facilities, to the fans, it was all really positive and I’m excited to be a part of  that kind of environment. I look forward to contributing to the Swamp Rabbits on the ice as well as in the community and can’t wait to get started.”

A native of Oakville, Ontario, Alderson has registered 31 points (17g, 14a) in 133 career AHL games between Lehigh Valley and the Adirondack Phantoms, and another 42 points (18g, 24a) in 76 ECHL contests.

Prior to turning pro, the 6’4, 203-pound forward played four seasons in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) with the Sarnia Sting and Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds. He logged 157 points (69g, 88a) in 267 games including a career-best 28 goals, 36 assists, and 64 points during his final season in 2012-13.

Get Social: Follow the Swamp Rabbits all off-season long and get behind-the-scenes coverage like never before on the team’s official Facebook,  Twitter, and Instagram pages.

Ticket packages for the 2016-17 season are available and on sale now! Contact a Swamp Rabbits Account Executive at 864-674-PUCK (7825) for more information and to secure your seats today! Get the latest Swamp Rabbits gear by visiting the “Hop Shop” online at SwampRabbits.com/shop to browse the full collection of fan wear and novelties!

CHAIMOVITCH: 2016-17 AMERICAN HOCKEY LEAGUE SCHEDULE RELEASED

ahl-logo_thumb2016-17 AMERICAN HOCKEY LEAGUE SCHEDULE RELEASED

81st season gets underway Friday, Oct. 14 

BY: Jason Chaimovitch, AHL

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League today released the complete schedule of regular-season games for the 2016-17 season, the league’s 81st year of operation. The season, comprising 1,116 games, begins on Fri., Oct. 14 and concludes on Sat., Apr. 15.

Teams will play 76 games each (38 at home, 38 on the road) with the exception of Pacific Division members Bakersfield, Ontario, San Diego, San Jose, Stockton and Tucson; those six teams will play 68 games each (34 home, 34 road).

2016-17 team-by-team schedules (PDF)
2016-17 day-by-day schedules (PDF)
2016-17 LeagueStat schedules

Some highlights of the 2016-17 schedule:

•    The 2016-17 regular season opens with eight games on Oct. 14, including the debut of the Tucson Roadrunners as they open their inaugural season in San Diego. The top affiliate of the Arizona Coyotes, the Roadrunners begin their home schedule on Oct. 28 when Stockton visits the Tucson Convention Center Arena.

•    The newly renamed Cleveland Monsters celebrate their 2016 Calder Cup championship on Oct. 14 when they drop the puck at Quicken Loans Arena against Rockford.

•    Also on Oct. 14, the Hershey Bears begin their 79th AHL season with a visit to the Rochester Americans – who are kicking off their 61st season – in a meeting between the AHL’s two longest-standing franchises. It will be the 451st regular-season matchup between the clubs all-time.

•    The Springfield Thunderbirds hit the ice for the first time on Oct. 15 at Lehigh Valley. The team’s home debut at the MassMutual Center is set for Oct. 22 vs. St. John’s.

•    The Milwaukee Admirals play their first game in their new home, the historic UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, on Oct. 29 against Iowa.

•    The 2017 Capital BlueCross AHL All-Star Classic will take place Sun., Jan. 29 and Mon., Jan. 30, at the PPL Center in Allentown, Pa., home of the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.

•    There are nine days this season on which all 30 AHL teams are in action: Sat., Nov. 12; Sat., Nov. 26; Sat., Dec. 3; Sat., Jan. 7; Fri., Jan. 13; Sat., Jan. 28; Fri., Mar. 17; Sat., Mar. 18; and Fri., Apr. 14.

The 2017 Calder Cup Playoffs will feature the top four teams in each of the AHL’s four divisions as ranked by points percentage (points earned divided by points available).

The American Hockey League was officially born in 1936 when the Canadian-American Hockey League and the International Hockey League merged to form the International-American Hockey League (the “International” would be dropped from the league’s name in 1940). The AHL continues to serve as the top development league for all 30 National Hockey League teams; more than 88 percent of today’s NHL players are American Hockey League graduates, and more than 100 honored members of the Hockey Hall of Fame spent time in the AHL in their careers. In 2015-16, over 7.1 million fans attended AHL regular-season and playoff games across North America, the highest total attendance in league history.

The entire 2016-17 AHL regular season schedule is available for viewing at theahl.com

FUEHRING: SWAMP RABBITS ANNOUNCE NEW MASCOT AND HAYWOOD MALL PLAY AREA SPONSORSHIP

Greenville Swamp RabbitsSWAMP RABBITS ANNOUNCE NEW MASCOT AND HAYWOOD MALL PLAY AREA SPONSORSHIP

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Swamp Rabbits

Greenville, SC The Greenville Swamp Rabbits, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, are excited to welcome Stomper to the Swamp Rabbits family.

On Saturday, August 20, the Swamp Rabbits announced the name and identity of the new mascot in the Children’s Play Area at the Haywood Mall in Greenville, SC.

After receiving over 300 initial name ideas from fans, the front office staff narrowed down the votes to the top five submissions. Fans were given until August 19 to submit their vote for Stomper, Hopper, Buster, Rascal or Bogs.

Stomper, the submission that received the majority of the votes, officially became the name of the Swamp Rabbits mascot. Stomper will reside at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena but can be expected to make many appearances around the Greater Greenville community.

If you would like for Stomper to visit your event, business or school, please contact Charlie Hall, Fan Development Coordinator, at CHall@swamprabbits.com.

The Swamp Rabbits are also excited to announce their new affiliation with Haywood Mall. The Swamp Rabbits will be the title sponsor for the Children’s Play Area. “This provides a great venue for families to do something different in the mall and also offers an opportunity for kids to be active,” said Swamp Rabbits Chief Marketing Officer, Megan Dotson. “We are passionate about children living healthy lifestyles and learning about staying active – all while having fun with their families!”

Haywood Mall, the preeminent shopping center in South Carolina, serves the six-county, upstate region. “The Swamp Rabbits are an important part of our local community, and we are honored to have their name associated with our family play area,” said Haywood Mall Director of Marketing, Sarah Brocker. “The Swamp Rabbits are committed to enhancing our community and educating children about healthy lifestyle choices, so what better way to showcase it than with this play area? We look forward to their continued support.”

Get social: Follow the Swamp Rabbits all season long and interact with other fans on the Official Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.

Ticket plans are available now and start as low as $126! Call an Account Executive today at 864-674-PUCK to secure your seats! The Swamp Rabbits open the home portion of the 2016-17 season on Friday, October 28 with a 7:00 p.m. puck drop against the Wichita Thunder.

FUEHRING: SWAMP RABBITS SCORE POINT-PER-GAME FORWARD, ALLAN McPHERSON

static1.squarespaceSWAMP RABBITS SCORE POINT-PER-GAME FORWARD

Allan McPherson signs with Greenville; Notched 72 points in 71 games with Elmira

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Swamp Rabbits

Greenville, SC  The Greenville Swamp Rabbits, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, today announced the club has signed third-year forward Allan McPherson for the 2016-17 season.

“Allan is a dynamic two-way center that will be able to play in a lot of different situations,” Head Coach Brian Gratz explained. “He is going to be a key piece for us as we move forward. He is strong in the face-off circle, possesses good vision and creativity with the puck and adds a strong character element to our team. We look forward to welcoming him to Greenville.”

McPherson, 25, was a key contributor for Elmira over the past two seasons, recording 72 points (27g, 45a) in 71 games with the Jackals. Last season, he notched a career-high in goals (19), assists (30), points (49) and plus-minus (+20) in 47 contests and was named the ECHL’s Player of the Month for February.

A native of Kinburn, Ontario, McPherson also made 60 appearances with the AHL’s Rochester Americans over the last two seasons, posting nine points (4g, 5a) and 14 penalty minutes. He made his professional debut with the AHL’s Abbotsford Heat near the end of the 2014-15 campaign and produced one assist in five contests.

”I’m very excited to be joining the Swamp Rabbits’ organization this season and eager to get the season started in the fall,” McPherson said.

Prior to his professional career, the 5’10, 180-pound forward spent four seasons at Clarkson University in Potsdam, NY. He registered 103 points (41g, 62a) in 150 career games and led the Golden Knights in point-scoring during his junior and senior seasons. He was also honored with Clarkson’s Bill Harrison Most Valuable Player Award following those campaigns.

Get Social: Follow the Swamp Rabbits all off-season long and get behind-the-scenes coverage like never before on the team’s official Facebook and Twitter.

Ticket packages for the 2016-17 season are available and on sale now! Contact a Swamp Rabbits Account Executive at 864-674-PUCK (7825) for more information and to secure your seats today! Get the latest Swamp Rabbits gear by visiting the “Hop Shop” online at SwampRabbits.com/shop.

FUEHRING: BRETTON CAMERON RETURNS TO SWAMP RABBITS

Photo Courtesy of John Kozak

Photo Courtesy of John Kozak

BRETTON CAMERON RETURNS TO SWAMP RABBITS

Seventh-year forward has served as team captain each of the last two seasons

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Swamp Rabbits

Greenville, SC – The Greenville Swamp Rabbits, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, today announced the club has re-signed forward Bretton Cameron for the 2016-17 season.

Cameron returns for his sixth season in the Upstate following his acquisition during the 2011-12 campaign. He was named the Swamp Rabbits’ third captain in franchise history on October 15, 2014, and continued to serve in that role last season.

The 26-year-old notched 30 points (12g, 18a) and 112 penalty minutes in 54 games last season and has recorded 114 points (45g, 69a) in 238 regular-season contests during his career with Greenville. Overall, he is a veteran of more than 320 ECHL games.

“I am beyond excited to be back for another season in Greenville. My fiancé and I call Greenville home year-round and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else,” Cameron said. “With the team becoming more of a staple in the community there is a lot of excitement about this season around the Upstate. I can’t wait to get things started and begin work on bringing a championship back to our city!”

A native of Didsbury, Alberta, Cameron debuted with Stockton during the 2010-11 campaign and recorded a career-best 31 points (16g, 15a) in 53 games. He was traded to Greenville from Stockton on January 24, 2012. In addition to his ECHL career, the sixth-year pro has dressed 23 games in the AHL with Hartford and Texas, where he registered six points (1g, 5a).

Prior to turning pro, the 5’11, 185-pound forward played parts of five seasons with the Medicine Hat Tigers of the Western Hockey League (WHL) from 2005-2010. He collected 120 points (62g, 58a) in 179 career games.

Get Social: Follow the Swamp Rabbits all off-season long and get behind-the-scenes coverage like never before on the team’s official Facebook and Twitter.

Ticket packages for the 2016-17 season are available and on sale now! Contact a Swamp Rabbits Account Executive at 864-674-PUCK (7825) for more information and to secure your seats today! Get the latest Swamp Rabbits gear by visiting the “Hop Shop” online at SwampRabbits.com/shop.

FUEHING: JOE HOUK REJOINS SWAMP RABBITS FOR 2016-17

JoeHoukJOE HOUK REJOINS SWAMP RABBITS FOR 2016-17

3rd year defenseman recorded 11 points in 26 games with Greenville last season

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Swamp Rabbits

Greenville, SC – The Greenville Swamp Rabbits, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, today announced defenseman Joe Houk has agreed to terms with the team for the 2016-17 season.

“Joe fits the mold of our team very well and was an effective two-way player for us in the second half of last season,” Head Coach Brian Gratz said. “He skates well and has become a player who can log a lot of minutes on our blue line as a key member of our defense corps.”

Houk joined the Swamp Rabbits last January following a trade with Manchester for future considerations. The Richboro, Pennsylvania native went on to record a career-high three goals, eight assists, and 11 points in 26 games with Greenville. Houk added one assist in 16 games with Elmira and Manchester prior to joining the Swamp Rabbits in 2015-16.

“There are a lot of things about Greenville that make it an ideal place to play,” Houk said. “The fans are as passionate as any in the ECHL and the facility is one of the best in the league. It’s also nice to play in one of the most competitive divisions. The choice to come back was easy.”

Houk split the 2014-15 season between the Jackals (14 games) and Toledo Walleye (25 games), where he skated with Swamp Rabbits Assistant Coach Troy Schwab. The 26-year-old combined for 13 points (2g, 11a) in 39 appearances during his rookie season.

Prior to turning pro, the 6’0, 204-pound defenseman played two seasons at Hamilton College (2009-11) and two seasons at the University of Massachusetts – Lowell (2012-14). He amassed 19 points (4g, 15a) in 74 career games to complete his collegiate career at UMASS-Lowell and helped the River Hawks capture the 2013 Hockey East Championship.

Get Social: Follow the Swamp Rabbits all off-season long and get behind-the-scenes coverage like never before on the team’s official Facebook and Twitter.

Ticket packages for the 2016-17 season are available and on sale now! Contact a Swamp Rabbits Account Executive at 864-674-PUCK (7825) for more information and to secure your seats today! Get the latest Swamp Rabbits gear by visiting the “Hop Shop” online at SwampRabbits.com/shop to browse the full collection of fan wear and novelties!

HOELER: DANBURY TITANS AND COACH PHIL ESPOSITO PART WAYS

PhilTitans and Head Coach Mutually Part Ways

BY: Chris Hoeler, Danbury Titans

Danbury, CT – The Danbury Titans and Head Coach Phil Esposito announced today that they have mutually agreed to part ways.

Esposito has been coaching in Danbury since 2010-11 when he was an assistant with the Danbury Whalers. The following season he took over as head coach and had an immediate impact bringing the Whalers to the finals. The following season he led the Whalers back to the finals and won Danbury’s first professional hockey championship.

With the Danbury Titans, his success carried over as the team finished first in the league for the regular season and made it to the finals before losing to the Port Huron Prowlers. In his time in Danbury, Coach Esposito finished with 161 regular season wins. The other factor of Coach Esposito was the effect he had on player development. Countless players were called up to the ECHL during his time as head coach, including to the AHL.

“I want to thank Bruce Bennett for giving me the opportunity to coach this team and to all of the staff who helped make this organization as professional as possible. I have been wrestling with what to do for awhile but feel that pursuing some other opportunities is what I need to do now. This was one of the most difficult decisions I have made in my hockey career but I have no doubt that Bruce and the Titans organization will be successful this coming season.”, said Esposito.

“Today was a tough day”, continued Esposito. “I have put a lot of time and effort into professional hockey in Danbury and can’t thank the fans and community enough for their support over the years. Danbury really is a great place to be for any hockey player. “

The Titans will work on finding a replacement head coach for the team.

FUEHRING: SWAMP RABBITS RE-UP WITH DOMMETT FOR 2016-17

rp_Greenville-Swamp-Rabbits-300x225.pngSWAMP RABBITS RE-UP WITH DOMMETT FOR 2016-17

Second-year forward recorded eight  points and seven fighting majors last season

 

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Swamp Rabbits

Greenville, SC – The Greenville Swamp Rabbits, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, today announced the team has re-signed forward Andrew Dommett for the 2016-17 season.

Dommett, 25, began his professional career with the Swamp Rabbits last season and notched eight points (4g, 4a) and 51 penalty minutes in 38 games. He scored his first pro goal on Jan. 3 at Manchester and racked up seven fighting majors over the course of the season – tied for second-most on the club.

“As we saw last season, Andrew is a hard-nosed, hard-working forward who gives it his all during every shift,” Head Coach Brian Gratz said. “He has offensive upside and is a guy whom we are looking to have a breakout year this season. His teammates love him because of his team-first approach and willingness to do anything for them.”

Prior to turning pro, Dommett played four seasons of college hockey at Lake Superior State University from 2011-15. In 128 appearances, the Major, Saskatchewan native produced 17 points (9g, 8a) and 61 penalty minutes for the Lakers. He spent two seasons alongside Swamp Rabbits forward Matt Johnson who was re-signed on June 24.

“I’m beyond excited to continue my career with such a great team, city and fan base,” Dommett said. “The organization knows how to treat players the right way, from the coaches to the front office, and I’m looking forward to getting back there. It was a simple decision to return.”

The 5’11, 192-pound forward also played four seasons with the Kindersley Klippers of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League from 2007-11.

Get Social: Follow the Swamp Rabbits all off-season long and get behind-the-scenes coverage like never before on the team’s official Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Ticket packages for the 2016-17 season are available and on sale now! Contact a Swamp Rabbits Account Executive at 864-674-PUCK (7825) for more information and to secure your seats today! Get the latest Swamp Rabbits gear by visiting the “Hop Shop” online at SwampRabbits.com/shop to browse the full collection of fan wear and novelties!

FUEHRING: SWAMP RABBITS ADD GOALTENDER P.J. MUSICO

New-Player-PM-2SWAMP RABBITS ADD GOALTENDER P.J. MUSICO

Second-year netminder earned a team-high seven wins in 13 appearances last season

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Swamp Rabbits

Greenville, SC – The Greenville Swamp Rabbits, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, today announced the club has signed goaltender P.J. Musico for the 2016-17 season.

Musico, 26, began his professional career with the Swamp Rabbits last season and led the team with seven victories despite making just 13 appearances. Overall, he posted a 7-3-1 record with a 2.35 goals-against-average and .925 save percentage. He earned a victory in his pro debut against South Carolina on Oct. 23 and notched his first pro shutout on Nov. 25 with a 26-save effort at Norfolk.

“I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to be back in Greenville,” Musico said. “The fans and staff were great to me last season and I can’t wait to get back and see everyone. I’m really looking forward to preparing for next year.”

A native of Orange, California, Musico was dealt to Quad City on Feb. 9 and made his final 10 appearances of the 2015-16 regular season with the Mallards. He continued a successful rookie campaign with a 6-3-1 record, 2.66 goals-against-average and .913 save percentage. He also played one post-season contest with Quad City.

“I am very happy to have P.J. back in Greenville,” Head Coach Brian Gratz said. “He did a tremendous job last season with the opportunity he was given. He has a very high compete level and does whatever it takes to win games. His character also makes him a great teammate and someone who other players want to play in front of.”

Prior to turning pro, Musico spent three seasons at Penn State University from 2012-15, posting a record of 10-15-1 with a 3.31 goals-against-average and .899 save percentage in 30 games. On Oct. 13, 2012, he earned the program’s first-ever win at the NCAA Division I level with a 32-save performance against AIC. He also collected a 34-save shutout against Army on Oct. 26, 2012, the first shutout in Penn State’s NCAA history.

The 6’1, 195-pound goaltender becomes the fifth player to sign with the Swamp Rabbits this off-season, joining Tyler Elbrecht, Trevor Gerling, Matt Johnson and Tommy Thompson.

Get Social: Follow the Swamp Rabbits all off-season long and get behind-the-scenes coverage like never before on the team’s official Facebook and Twitter

Ticket packages for the 2016-17 season are available and on sale now! Contact a Swamp Rabbits Account Executive at 864-674-PUCK (7825) for more information and to secure your seats today! Get the latest Swamp Rabbits gear at the “Hop Shop” team store or visit the “Hop Shop” online at SwampRabbits.com/shop to browse the full collection of fan wear and novelties!

FUEHRING: RABBITS SUBMIT QO’S TO SEVEN PLAYERS

rp_Greenville-Swamp-Rabbits-300x225.pngSWAMP RABBITS SUBMIT QUALIFYING OFFERS TO SEVEN

Greenville protects ECHL rights to five forwards and two defensemen

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Swamp Rabbits

Greenville, SC – The Greenville Swamp Rabbits, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, today announced the team has submitted qualifying offers to seven players from its 2015-16 roster.

“There’s a great deal of leadership, skill and chemistry in this group of players to complement the ones we have already signed,” Head Coach Brian Gratz said. “Between this mix of guys and the players we already have, I think there’s a solid core for us to build a championship-winning team around.”

The Swamp Rabbits have submitted qualifying offers to the following players:

Justin DaSilva (D): DaSilva made 61 appearances with the Swamp Rabbits last season, finishing third on the team with 71 penalty minutes and tying for fifth among all ECHL rookies with seven fighting majors. The 26-year-old also notched 21 points (3g, 18a) and a +5 rating in his first full professional campaign. A native of Cambridge, Ontario, DaSilva played four seasons at Ohio State University prior to turning pro.

Sean Escobedo (D): The 25-year-old led all Swamp Rabbits defensemen with 21 assists in 62 contests last season. He added a goal and 44 penalty minutes and was second among team defensemen with 22 points. A native of Bayside, New York, Escobedo also played 13 games in the American Hockey League (AHL) between the Hartford Wolf Pack, Charlotte Checkers, and Manitoba Moose. He caught fire late in the season, collecting a goal and four assists in just 10 games with Manitoba.

Scott Fleming (F): Fleming, 27, was consistently Greenville’s most productive offensive player last season. He led the team with 71 appearances, 57 points, 36 assists and a +17 rating – all career highs. The Plainfield, Ontario native also finished the season tied for second on the club in goals (21) and added 28 penalty minutes. Fleming will enter his fourth pro campaign this October.

Kellen Jones (F): Greenville acquired Jones’ rights on Jun. 13 in a trade with the Missouri Mavericks to complete the Darian Dziurzynski deal from Mar. 3. The 25-year-old registered more than a point-per-game with the Mavericks last season, helping Missouri to the ECHL’s best regular-season record (52-15-5) and the 2016 Brabham Cup title. He notched 25 points (6g, 19a) and a +9 rating in 23 regular-season games and also made 33 appearances in the AHL with the Bakersfield Condors and Utica Comets. A native of Montrose, British Columbia, Jones was initially drafted by the Edmonton Oilers in the seventh round (202nd overall) of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.

Kevin King (F): King, 26, signed with Greenville on Mar. 8 shortly after completing a five-year career at the University of Calgary. He gathered one assist in nine appearances with the Swamp Rabbits and also spent three games with the AHL’s Texas Stars. A Calgary native, King recorded 24 points (7g, 17a), 34 penalty minutes and a +7 rating in 28 games during his final college season in 2015-16.

Ryan Rashid (F): Rashid made 68 appearances with the Swamp Rabbits last season, second-most on the team, and ranked fifth in scoring with 38 points (13g, 25a). The 26-year-old added 53 penalty minutes and also played two games with the AHL’s Charlotte Checkers. A native of Farmington Hills, Michigan, Rashid will enter his third professional season this October.

Vinny Saponari (F): Saponari, 26, spent the entire 2014-15 campaign with Greenville, but only played 40 games with the club last season. He was signed on Nov. 19 and produced 17 points (6g, 11a) and 12 penalty minutes during several AHL stints. The Powder Springs, Georgia native recorded seven points (1g, 6a) and six penalty minutes in 18 appearances with the AHL’s Portland Pirates, Milwaukee Admirals, and 2016 Calder Cup champion Lake Erie Monsters. Saponari was initially drafted in the fourth round (94th overall) by the Atlanta Thrashers in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.

Per ECHL guidelines, each team is entitled to reserve the rights to a maximum of eight (8) qualified players. Of those eight, no more than four could be veterans (260 regular-season professional games played as of the start of the 2016-17 season). Players on open qualifying offers cannot be traded.

The qualifying offer must remain open for acceptance until Aug. 1 at which time the qualifying offer becomes null and void and the team may sign the qualified player to any salary or may elect to take no further action. Teams that extend a valid qualifying offer to a non-veteran player shall retain the rights to that qualified player for one playing season.

If a restricted free agent is not signed to either an offer sheet or a contract by an ECHL team by Aug. 31, the player shall be deemed an unrestricted free agent.

Get Social: Follow the Swamp Rabbits all off-season long and get behind-the-scenes coverage like never before on the team’s official Facebook and Twitter

Ticket packages for the 2016-17 season are available and on sale now! Contact a Swamp Rabbits Account Executive at 864-674-PUCK (7825) for more information and to secure your seats today! Get the latest Swamp Rabbits gear at the “Hop Shop” team store or visit the “Hop Shop” online at SwampRabbits.com/shop to browse the full collection of fan wear and novelties!