Stacking With Deck
Defenseman is third player to return from last season’s Kelly Cup Finals team
STOCKTON, Calif. –
STOCKTON, Calif. –The Stockton Thunder (@StocktonThunder), proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Islanders of the National Hockey League, and head coach and director of hockey operations Rich Kromm announced today that the team has agreed to terms with defenseman Nathan Deck. Per club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Deck, 23, is the third player (Garet Hunt and Shawn Boutin) slated to return to the Thunder from last season’s team that captured the Western Conference title.
“Nathan is no stranger to Thunder fans as an excellent, steady and reliable defenseman and we’re thrilled to bring him back,” said Kromm. “He was a highly demanded recruit even during my time in the CHL which shows how many teams desire a player like him. He’s got the tools to be a horse on the back end for us and provide continuity from last season’s team, showing others what it takes to win and compete for a championship.”
Deck boasted 22 points (7g-15a) and a +8 rating in 28 games with the Thunder last season while adding a goal and three assists in eight Kelly Cup Playoff games. He was named to the starting lineup for the 2013 ECHL All-Star Game in Colorado and was unavailable to play while on recall with the Oklahoma City Barons of the American Hockey League. He was signed to a one-year, two-way AHL contract with the Barons on Feb. 19.
The 5-foot-10 and 181 pound defenseman earned eight points (1g-7a) and 12 penalty minutes in 33 games with Oklahoma City, returning for the remainder of the ECHL postseason during the Conference Finals against the Idaho Steelheads.
The native of Sedley, Saskatchewan has totaled 48 points (14g-34a) and a +18 rating in 88 career games with the Thunder and earned the team’s “Unsung Hero” award as a rookie in 2011-12 with 26 points (7g-19a) and a +10 rating.
“I’m thrilled to come back to Stockton and give it another run,” said Deck. “I’ve had two great years there, love the fans and know there is nowhere else I’d rather play in this league. Many of us from last year realize there is unfinished work and it’s motivating to know we’re building for a great season.”
Deck skated in 277 career games in the Western Hockey League with Prince Albert and Vancouver, totaling 118 points (22g-96a).
The Thunder opens the regular season at home for “Opening Night,” with the unveiling of the Western Conference championship banner on Saturday, Oct. 19 at 7:30 p.m. against the Colorado Eagles at Stockton Arena.
A two time recipient of the ECHL “Award of Excellence” and defending Western Conference champion, the Thunder led the ECHL in attendance for four consecutive seasons and drew over 200,000 fans for the eighth consecutive season in 2012-13. Season Tickets and Mini Plans are on sale now. For more information about tickets, merchandise, or other inquiries contact the Stockton Thunder offices at (209) 373-1500 or visit www.StocktonThunder.com.