COVENTRY BLAZE head coach Danny Stewart has expressed his excitement in new signing Darcy Zajac stating the forward can play in all situations and will bring plenty of production to the roster.
Zajac’s pen to paper deal comes just four weeks prior to Blaze’s first fixture of the 2016/17 season, a home pre-season tie against last year’s Playoff Grand Final rivals Nottingham.
The 6’1″ winger, who has spent the majority of his playing career in the American Hockey League (AHL), joins from Danish powerhouse side Sønderjyske, based in Vojens.
Zajac’s appointment has excited Stewart who said the 29-year-old’s style of play will enable the option of switching skipper Jordan Pietrus to playing on the wing should it be necessary while Zajac fills in the central position.
NHL giants the New Jersey Devils snapped up Zajac on a two-way contract during his American hockey days, where he appeared once in a pre-season clash against the New York Rangers in 2013.
Last season, the forward posted ten points from 16 regular season appearances before adding a further nine markers in 13 playoff fixtures.
In his earlier days, Zajac spent four years at the University of North Dakota, helping the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) reach the NCAA frozen-four tournament in the process.
Zajac was nominated for the prestigious WCHA Derek Hines Unsung Hero Award, missing out to Blaze’s own Jordan Pietrus.
Head coach Stewart said: “Darcy has a great track record and spent five seasons in the AHL – primarily with Albany which is a very tough thing to do.
“He’s a guy who has played for great organisations and he’ll bring a lot to our line up through grit, hard work and production.
“I like his versatility and he’ll play minutes in all situations – he plays on the right hand side but he’s also a very good centreman, this gives me the option of using Jordan (Pietrus) on the wing if I need to.”