FORT WAYNE – As the Komets struggled throughout their inaugural first season in the CHL – they were in last place among 18 teams until last February – defenseman Frankie DeAngelis was one of the few consistent bright spots.
In fact, he was their lone representative at the All-Star Game.
On Wednesday, it was finalized that hell be back for a third season with the Komets.
With the signing of Franke DeAngelis, we are bringing back one of our go-to guys, said Komets general manager David Franke, who had already brought in defenseman Jamie Milam.
Frankie and Jamie Milam will add a lot of offense to the team when (playing) five-on-five and especially on the power play.
DeAngelis, 26, had 11 goals and 30 points in 54 games last season.
Milam, 27, who played last season with the CHL-champion Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs, had 17 goals and 48 points in 66 games.
Frankie is a solid individual and a team player. We are fortunate to get him back to Fort Wayne for another season, said Franke, who is also arranging a tryout for DeAngelis with a higher-level American Hockey League team this fall.
DeAngelis, who hasnt played for any other professional teams, couldnt be reached for comment.
The Komets also announced that assistant coach Gary Graham will be back for a fourth season.
He helped Fort Wayne to three straight titles in the IHL before they joined the CHL last year.
Gary is a very valuable person in our hockey operations staff, Franke said. Gary is a hard-working and dedicated assistant coach for (head coach Al Sims) and is liked and respected by the players.
The Komets, who were eliminated by Rapid City in the Turner Conference semifinals, have signed 13 players for the upcoming season, including eight that were with the team last season: forwards Colin Chaulk, Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock, P.C. Drouin, Danny Lapointe and Tom Mele, defensemen DeAngelis and Craig Cescon, plus goaltender Nick Boucher.
There will be 14 teams in the CHL this season.
The Komets, who expect to open training camp Oct. 10, will play exhibition games Oct. 14 at Hara Arena in Dayton and Oct. 16 at Memorial Coliseum against the Gems.
On Oct. 22, the Komets will skate their regular-season home opener – the opponent hasnt yet been determined – and the full schedule has yet to be released.