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Reiter coming back

Oleksy backs out; check out college football show

The Komets have reunited Nick Boucher and Kevin Reiter with hopes that the goaltending tandem is as successful this season as it was in 2007-08.

That season, Boucher and Reiter helped the Komets to regular-season and playoff championships in the newly reformed IHL. Boucher hoisted the Turner Cup, after helping lead the Komets back from a 3-1 deficit in the Finals against Port Huron. Reiter took Goaltender of the Year honors, after going 32-10-4 with a 2.34 goals-against average and a .910 save percentage.

"I think he's the right guy because we had looked at a lot of different goalies and (decided) Kevin played well here and did well for us in '07-08. He knows the coach, a lot of the players and the city, and there's a real comfort level for him," general manager David Franke said.

Boucher never left, guiding the Komets to championships in 2009 and 2010, while splitting playing time with Sebastien Laplante and Tim Haun. Meanwhile, Reiter took a foray to Europe and played for Basingstoke, Sheffield and Newcastle in England during the last two seasons.

Last season was largely derailed by an abdominal injury, but the Komets aren't worried about that.

"We're not expecting him to come in and play 50 games for us," Franke said. "I'm sure there will be kind of a rotation like before, and if one of them goes hot, we'll go with that guy. But as you know, there always seems to be an injury or two. We feel we have two legitimate goalies who can step in...and we've got a good rotation and depth in goal."

What does Boucher think of all this? He was so excited about the prospect that he told Franke to make the signing happen.

"Kevin wanted to be closer to home and we wanted to get somebody in here who would complement Nick," Franke said. "And around the time I got in touch with Kevin, Nick e-mailed me that he talked to Kevin and was in on this. Nick was campaigning."

Before joining the Komets for their inaugural season in the Central Hockey League, where he played in 2006-07 for Laredo, Reiter, 29, will attend training camp with Worcester of the higher-level American Hockey League.

Reiter has spent some of this summer taking shots from members of the Pittsburgh Penguins, including Sidney Crosby.

He couldn't be reached for comment.

  • I'm sure this post will get blamed by some, since it took a surprising amount of ire when I wrote it, but Steven Oleksy has informed the Komets he won't be coming to training camp. That's because, according to Franke, he's concerned the number of returning defensemen will mean he won't have a fair shot of making the roster. Oleksy is going to the ECHL, Franke said.
  • Today's edition of "We've got Game," co-hosted by Justin Cohn and Ben Smith, will feature a college football spectacular. We will have beat writers covering Notre Dame, Purdue and Indiana on the show, which airs live 4 to 5 p.m. If you miss it, you can listen to the replay anytime. Just use the radio button on the top right of the post.

Justin A. Cohn, pro sports coordinator for The Journal Gazette, has been covering the Fort Wayne Komets since 1997. His reporting includes game stories from home and away, features about the players and personalities associated with the Komets, plus coverage of issues affecting hockey at all levels. A native of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Cohn graduated from Emory University in Atlanta. He can be reached at 260-461-8429 or by email at jcohn@jg.net.

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