TRANSFER - Blaze sign Dudek to bolster squad - The Coventry Observer

TRANSFER - Blaze sign Dudek to bolster squad

Coventry Editorial 16th Dec, 2022   0

COVENTRY Blaze have announced the addition of American centreman J.D. Dudek to the roster for the remainder of the 2022/23 Viaplay Elite League season.

The 26-year-old joins Blaze from HockeyEttan Swedish side Tranås AIF with whom he played 14 games scoring four goals and providing four assists.

It was Dudek’s second experience in Sweden, where he also spent part of the 2020/21 season scoring nine goals, and four assists in 21 regular season and playoff games with Bodens.

Dudek will wear number 79 for the Blaze and is available for selection this weekend.

Blaze Head Coach Danny Stewart said: “We wanted to add depth up the middle and to our line-up. We learned last season that you can never have enough centres and J.D. also can play wing.

“He is a 200-foot player that can play up and down the line-up and at different positions. He has a really good pedigree, and we feel is another guy that has a lot of upside.

“This provides us with cover should we drop a player due to injury, but I feel J.D. has the ability to work his way into the line-up once that opportunity arises too.

“He’s a hard-working guy that skates well. He compliments what we have, and we feel he will fit into our group nicely.”

Since turning professional in 2019/20, Dudek has also appeared in 76 ECHL and AHL games with near 30 points with Worcester Railers, Allen Americans and Binghamton Devils.

Dudek was drafted in 2014 by the NHL’s New Jersey Devils following a four-year stay at Boston College (NCAA) where he played 149 regular season games with 56 points (28 goals and 28 assists).

During his time with the Eagles, the right-shooting centre received the James E. Tiernan Award given to the team’s most improved player in 2018/19, won a Hockey East regular season championship in 2017/18, and lifted a Beanpot Championship in 2015/16 while reaching the Frozen Four.

Internationally, Dudek has represented USA under-18’s at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial tournament where he scored three points (one goal, two assists) in five appearances.

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