One of the most prolific scorers in AHL history will be returning to Glens Falls as the Adirondack Phantoms announced today that Denis Hamel has re-signed for the 2011-12 season.
* Reaching the 300 goal milestone on December 17 in a 3-1 victory over the Hershey Bears. He became just the 19th AHL player to score 300 goals.
* Recording the second hat trick in Adirondack Phantoms history and his first since 2008 in a 4-0 victory at the Hamilton Bulldogs on February 5.
* Recording another hat trick AND reaching the 600 point milestone in the same game in a 6-0 win against the Rochester Americans on April 4.
Hamel joined the Phantoms in November, 2010 and quickly became a fan favorite leading the team in scoring with 25 goals and 50 points. It was Hamel's ninth AHL season with 20 or more goals.
"Hammer" rates 16th all-time in AHL history with 315 goals and is 42nd all-time in total points with 605. He is 10 goals away from former Adirondack Red Wings great Glenn Merkosky for 12th on the all-time list.
The 34 year old veteran has also played in 192 NHL games primarily with the Buffalo Sabres and Ottawa Senators scoring 19 goals and 31 points.
"Adirondack is a nice place to play," Hamel said on his interest in returning. "And at the end of the season if you look at the stats we did pretty good at the end. So it's always positive when you are thinking of going back to the team that it will be most of the same players."
"Denis is an excellent professional for us and he has been really good with our younger players," said Phantoms Head Coach Joe Paterson. "Plus he also scored some huge goals for us to enable us to win some games."
Hamel said he understands how a player with his amount of experience can play a valuable role on a team filled with young players, "It's great when they have a lot of questions because I've been in the NHL for a few years. It's always great if I can help a young guy to make it. I'll be the oldest guy on the team and I'll just try to lead by example on the ice and off the ice."
Hamel is the all-time leading scorer in Binghamton Senators history with 203 of his total 315 goals coming with that team between 2002-2010. He was captain on the Canadian squad at the AHL All-Star Classic in Binghamton in 2008. That same year he won the AHL's Yanick Dupre Award as the AHL's Man of the Year for his commitment to the community, youth groups and charitable organizations.
In 2005-06 Hamel won a share of the AHL's Willie Marshall Award tying for the league lead in goals with a career high 56. His professional career began in 1997 with the Rochester Americans and he made his NHL debut in 1999-2000 with the Buffalo Sabres.
Hamel has played in 776 AHL games and 192 NHL games for a combined total of 968 putting him within range to achieve this season the incredible milestone of 1000 professional games. PHANTOMS ADD PRESEASON GAME
The Adirondack Phantoms have announced a preseason home game on Saturday, October 1 against the Albany Devils at the Glens Falls Civic Center. Game-time is slated for 7:00pm.
Tickets for the October 1 preseason game will go on sale at a later date. Full season ticket holders will get admission to the preseason game as part of their ticket package.
The remainder of the Phantoms preseason schedule will be announced soon and the full 2011-12 regular season schedule is expected to be released in mid-August.Opening night for the 2011-12 season of exciting Adirondack Phantoms hockey is Saturday, October 8.
Secure your seats for the 2011-12 season with a full season ticket package. Phantoms Season Ticket Holders have access to exclusive benefits. Other great packages available too.
Call 518-480-3355 or visit phantomshockey.com for more information. Follow the Phantoms on twitter @phantomshockey and on facebook.com/adkhockey