ESTERO, Fla. — The Florida Everblades have added six players to their training camp roster, including four players assigned by the American Hockey League’s Charlotte Checkers and two players released from AHL tryouts, Everblades President and General Manager Craig Brush and Head Coach Brad Ralph announced on Tuesday.
Joe Cox, the ‘Blades leading rookie scorer from the 2017-18 season, headlined the players added to the roster, while Charlotte assigned defenseman Patrick McCarron, forwards Zach Nastasiuk and Kyle Platzer, and goaltender Jamie Phillips and released defenseman Matt Finn from his tryout.
A native of Chelsea, Michigan, Cox, 24, finished fifth in the ECHL in scoring among rookies a season ago with 54 points in 70 games, just eight points shy of the league lead in that category. The Michigan State University product then tallied 16 points in 21 playoff games to help the ‘Blades reach the Kelly Cup Finals. In four years with the Spartans, Cox played in 143 games and posted 69 career points, captaining the team in his senior season in 2016-17.
Platzer, 23, comes to the Everblades with three seasons of AHL experience. A fourth-round selection of the Edmonton Oilers in the 2013 NHL Draft, Platzer played each of the last three seasons with the Bakersfield Condors and shared the 2017-18 season between Bakersfield and the Wichita Thunder in the ECHL. In 147 AHL games, Platzer netted 43 points (17 G, 26 A). Prior to turning professional, Platzer recorded 140 career points over 203 games with the London Knights in the Ontario Hockey League.
Nastasiuk, 23, has split time between the ECHL and AHL over the last three seasons with the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins and ECHL’s Toledo Walleye. A second-round pick of the Detroit Red Wings in the 2013 NHL Draft, Nastasiuk tabbed 17 points in 30 games for the Walleye last year, while logging five points in 20 games with the Griffins. He spent four seasons with the Owen Sound Attack in the OHL, including two seasons as the captain from 2013-15.
McCarron, 24, played a bulk of the 2017-18 campaign with the Walleye, registering 19 points (9 G, 10 A) in 54 games in his rookie season. The Toronto, Ontario, native has made four appearances in the AHL over the last two seasons, both of which came with Grand Rapids. A 6-foot-3, 198-pound rear guard, McCarron played four years with Cornell University and served as an assistant captain for the Big Red as a senior in 2016-17. He saw ice time in 123 career games and posted 50 points (12 G, 38 A) in that span.
Phillips is another addition that possesses both AHL and ECHL experience. The 6-foot-1, 170-pound netminder shared last season with the AHL’s Manitoba Moose and ECHL’s Jacksonville IceMen, appearing in 16 games each for both teams. A seventh-round pick of the Winnipeg Jets in the 2012 NHL Draft, Phillips finished with a 6-7-1 record for the Moose in 2017-18, compiling a 2.76 goals-against-average and a .912 save percentage. He recorded 57 career wins in 99 career games during a four-year career at Michigan Tech University.
Finn returns to the Everblades after playing eight games with the team a year ago. Although most of his 2017-18 season was lost to injury, he did appear in seven games with Charlotte, as well. A Toronto, Ontario, native, Finn was a second-round pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 2012 NHL Draft and has played at least two games in the AHL in each of the last four seasons. He has 89 games of ECHL experience with 50 career points (19 G, 31 A) in the league. Before his professional career, Finn played four seasons in the OHL with the Guelph Storm, serving as an alternate captain for two seasons and a captain for his final season with the team in 2013-14.
The Everblades will play a pair of preseason games this weekend, hosting the Orlando Solar Bears on Oct. 5-6 at Hertz Arena. Single-game tickets start as low as $10.
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The Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliateof the NHL’s Carolina Hurricanes