CINCINNATI, OH – Announced at a season ticket holder party on Thursday night, the Cincinnati Cyclones made it a good evening by breaking the ice with the announcement that Eric Knodel will be returning to the Cincinnati blue line in the fall.
Knodel was the Cyclones’ highest scoring defenseman during the 2016-17 campaign, racking up 28 points, good for eight goals and 20 assists in 58 appearances. He also served as one of the team’s alternate captains during the second half of the season when injuries began to stack up. Knodel also represented Cincinnati at the 2017 ECHL All Star Classic in Glens Falls, NY, and participated in the Hardest Shot competition, finishing among the top three.
Prior to coming to Cincinnati, the 6-6 defenseman spent the 2015-16 season between the AHL’s San Diego Gulls and Utah Grizzlies. He appeared in 60 contests, with four of those coming in San Diego. While in Salt Lake City, he accounted for 22 points with seven goals and 15 assists, and was their highest scoring defenseman as well.
His first pro season was spent in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization, splitting time between the Toronto Marlies in the American League and the Orlando Solar Bears. In 19 AHL contests with the Marlies, he totaled eight assists. While wearing one of the slickest logos in the ECHL on his chest down in Florida, he scored 19 points which added up to five goals and 14 assists in 38 games. As a Solar Bear, he was also their second highest plus/minus with a plus-16 on the season.
His college hockey days were spent at the University of New Hampshire in the NCAA. Through 116 collegiate contests, Knodel racked up 61 points that totaled 20 goals and 49 assists. He also served as team captain during his senior campaign. He also played one season of junior hockey in the United States Hockey League with the Des Moines Buccaneers. While in the capital of Iowa, he appeared in 50 junior contests, and accounted for 20 points, good for three goals and 17 assists.
It was very pivotal to get Knodel back in Cincinnati for the upcoming season. He was Cincinnati’s all star representative for a reason. Not only is he very stable defensively, but can also contribute offensively as well by quarterbacking the power play with his lethal shot that can fool any goaltender by catching them off-guard. He was also a huge part of the Cyclones locker room and earned that “A” on his shoulder for the latter half of the season, and I fully expect him to keep that “A” this season.