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Ice Chips

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    If you are interested in this sort of thing, here is a lawsuit that was filed against the ECHL by the CHL, in which it is alleged the ECHL tried to "poach" the Rapid City Rush and Allen Americans.
  • Ex-Komet becomes a coach
    Former Komets player Kevin Kaminski has been hired to coach the Portland Junior Pirates.
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    Goaltender Ben Meisner, who played last season for the Komets, has signed to play with Allen of the CHL this season.

K's beef up defense

They have 2 Molles, 8 defensemen, among 21 players so far

The Komets continue to prioritize defense with their early signings. They inked four more defensemen Wednesday -- including returning Komet Dustin Molle and his brother, Bryant -- and that gives them eight blue-liners already for their 60th season in professional hockey.

Dustin Molle, 25, played 39 games with Fort Wayne, tallying one goal, six points and 42 penalty minutes. Bryant Molle, 24, spent most of last season with the University of Alaska-Fairbanks, tallying two goals, six points and 22 points in 38 games before skating twice with the ECHL's Alaska Aces.

Also joining the blue line will be 22-year-old former University of Michigan star Tristin Llewellyn, who played 33 games last season in the ECHL with Elmira, totaling one goal, six points and 29 penalty minutes, and 25-year-old Dave Starensky, who had five assists and 210 penalty minutes in 31 games with the St. Georges CRS Express of the semi-pro Ligue Nord Americaine de Hockey.

These additions join Frankie DeAngelis, the Komets' lone all-star in their inaugural CHL season, Craig Cescon, and the prolific-scoring Jamie Milam and Simon Mangos, who spent last season with CHL-champion Bossier Shreveport.

The Komets have one goaltender, Nick Boucher, and 12 forwards, including Colin Chaulk, P.C. Drouin, Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock and Brett Smith, giving them 21 players under contract thus far. One of those is forward Stephen Thorne, who had 11 goals and 22 points in 61 Ontario Hockey League games last season with the Brampton Battallion, and whose signing was reported by The Journal Gazette last week but confirmed by the Komets on Wednesday.

The Komets would like to have around 35 players vying for about 20 spots when training camp opens Oct. 10 at Memorial Coliseum.

The regular-season schedule still hasn't been released because of an impasse between the Evansville IceMen and a new arena there on finalizing a lease agreement for this season.

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