Hughes, 23, returns to the Thunder for his second professional season after he collected 22 points (11g-11a) in 64 games with the team during the 2015-16 season. Hughes, who was one of seven Thunder players with double digit goals, also made his AHL debut with the Albany Devils where he collected an assist in three games. The Highland Park, Ill. native skated in all 12 of Adirondack’s playoff games and scored two goals, including the overtime game-winner in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against South Carolina.
The young forward originally signed with the Thunder after four seasons at St. Lawrence University, where he captained the Saints as a senior in 2014-15. During the 2014-15 season, Hughes led his team with 12 goals and finished fourth in total scoring with 22 points (12g-10a). Hughes concluded his collegiate career at St. Lawrence with 73 points (28g-45a) in 143 career games. Prior to St. Lawrence, Hughes skated one season in the USHL with the Waterloo Black Hawks, where he collected 26 points (15g-11a) in 57 games.