GLENS FALLS, N.Y. – The Adirondack Thunder opened training camp Monday and there are many unfamiliar faces. The 2019 training camp roster includes 13 newcomers, including eight rookies, including four who made brief appearances in Glens Falls after their college careers ended last season. There are also a few big names missing from the roster.
- Hans Gorowsky: The forward made his pro debut with Adirondack late last season after finishing his college career at the University of Alabama-Huntsville, where he had 50 points in 136 games. Gorowsky quickly made an impact with the Thunder, scoring two goals in his four games played.
- Tommy Parran: The Ohio State product also made an impact with the Thunder last season, picking up an assist and looking solid in his three games. The defenseman had 26 points in 121 games in college.
- Derek Petti: After finishing his college career with Merrimack (49 points in 127 games), the forward made his pro debut with Adirondack. He didn’t pick up any points in his four games played, but looked solid nonetheless.
- Ryan Walker: Walker attended Union College, with 68 points in 142 games. The small speedy forward played in five games for the Thunder and one for their AHL affiliate, Binghamton Devils, at the end of last season. He earned himself a spot in Binghamton’s training camp this season, but was released in time for Adirondack’s camp.
- Zach Borsoi: The big (6’4″) offensive defenseman picked up 63 points in 110 games during his tenure at Utica College, and should put up some decent numbers at the pro level as well.
- Charles Curti: The defenseman out of Yale also attended Binghamton’s camp this preseason, and like Walker, was cut in time for Adirondack’s camp.
- Bobby Dow: The only rookie coming from juniors, the forward put up respectable numbers (43 points in 62 games) with the Sherbrooke Phoenix of the QMJHL last season.
- Craig Martin: Another rookie forward out of college, Martin picked up 75 points in his four years at Quinnipiac. He attended the Toronto Marlies training camp this season.
- Cody Milan: The forward attended Michigan State, where he accumulated 53 points in 122 games.
- Ara Nazarian: The newcomer out of the University of New Hampshire is one of the few rookies guaranteed a roster spot, as he was reassigned from Binghamton and is on an AHL contract. While at UNH, Nazarian amassed 74 points.
- Austin Plevy: The forward spent three years at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, where he put up 50 points, before transferring to Northeastern (eight points).
- Marly Quince: He didn’t have the greatest numbers at Clarkson (29 points in 101 games), and with all the other rookie forwards in camp, will have to fight for a spot on the opening night roster.
The Other Newcomers:
- Casey Pierro-Zabotel: After appearing in all 72 games in both the 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons, the veteran forward only saw action in eight games last season due to injury. Arguably the most impressive offseason addition, Pierro-Zabotel was a member of the Kelly Cup champions Allen Americans in 2015-16 and Colorado Eagles in 2016-17 and is the league’s active leader in points with 504.
- Gabriel Verpaelst: During the 2018 Kelly Cup final, Verpaelst scored the game-winner in Colorado’s game seven victory over the Florida Everblades to secure the final championship for the franchise. This past season, injury limited the defenseman to only 32 games for the Wichita Thunder and Utah Grizzlies.
- Henry Dill: Dill spent his rookie season in the SPHL, and signed with the Quad City Mallards (SPHL) for this season. The second-year pro is in Adirondack’s camp as a tryout.
- Ben Halford: Also in his second pro season, Halford is coming from the Kansas City Mavericks, where he went 5-8-0 with a 3.24 goals against average and 0.889 save percentage. He will likely be Adirondack’s number two goaltender.
- Eamon McAdam: McAdam may be a newcomer, but he is no stranger to the Thunder. The goaltender has played for both rival Worcester Railers and for 2019 Kelly Cup champ Newfoundland Growlers. He also has some AHL experience, 36 games with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers and 19 with the Toronto Marlies. On an AHL contract with Binghamton, McAdam is expected to be Adirondack’s starter.
- Alex Carrier: Carrier has played 278 games in the ECHL, 95 of them for Adirondack. He was with the Thunder for much of their inaugural season, then spent the next two seasons bouncing around the ECHL, before returning the Glens Falls for the 2018-19 season.
- Shane Conacher: Conacher has spent the past two seasons with Adirondack. He split time between the Thunder and Syracuse Crunch in 2017-18 and put up incredible numbers — 63 points in 55 games for Adirondack. Though hampered by testicular cancer last season, the talented forward was still able to contribute 33 points in 43 games for the Thunder. Assuming he remains cancer-free, Conacher will once again be a major contributor.
- James Henry: The Thunder captain is the only current player to participate in each of Adirondack’s five ECHL seasons. Henry hasn’t missed a game the past two seasons, and has accumulated 198 points in 253 games with Adirondack, with three consecutive seasons of more than 50 points. He earned an invite to Binghamton’s training camp this season, but was released prior to Adirondack’s camp.
- Matt Salhany: After being a healthy scratch early in the season, the small speedy forward got a chance to prove himself and earned a regular spot in the lineup, putting up 42 points in 58 games. He also earned himself a spot in Binghamton’s training camp this season, but like the others, was cut prior to Adirondack’s camp. Expect another good season from him.
- Michael Sdao: Sdao is a big physical defenseman who isn’t afraid to lay down big hits. He has plenty of AHL experience (137 games, mostly with Binghamton), and was invited to the Devils camp this fall. His size and experience will continue to benefit the Thunder this season.
- Kelly Summers: Possibly the most improved rookie last season, Summers overcame an injury and worked to improve his skill level to become a reliable defenseman for the Thunder. He ended the regular season with 24 points in 49 games and found himself in Binghamton for camp this fall.
- Blake Thompson: The defenseman is in his third season with the Thunder, and continues to improve. Like Henry, he appeared in each of the 72 regular season games in 2018-19.
Of Adirondack’s eight qualifying offers, only half of them are currently in camp (Conacher, Sdao, Summers, Thompson). All-Star forward Mike Szmatula is in Poland for the 2019-20 season. Conor Riley attended the Anaheim Ducks training camp and is currently in camp with the AHL’s San Diego Gulls. If he doesn’t make the Gulls opening night roster, the Thunder still own his rights. Barring a trade, the only ECHL team Riley can play for this season is Adirondack. Defensemen Jake Linhart and Desmond Bergin are still unsigned.
The Thunder have a home-and-home preseason series with the Reading Royals, Friday in Reading, and Saturday in Glens Falls. The regular season begins October 11 in Maine. The home opener is October 19 against the Worcester Railers.