Lloyd returns to North America with Nailers

WHEELING, W.Va. – The Wheeling Nailers, ECHL affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins, announced the team has signed forward Darryl Lloyd for the 2016-17 season.

Lloyd returns to the ECHL for the first time since 2010-11, after spending each of the last five seasons with the EIHL’s Belfast Giants. His European numbers were consistent, as he recorded at least 15 goals and at least 30 points in three of his five years with the Giants. His highest point total in Belfast came during the 2014-15 campaign, when he accumulated 36 in 51 games. His 2011-12 numbers fell one shy at 35, but that was achieved in 13 fewer contests.

Prior to making his way to the Eastern Hemisphere, Lloyd played seven seasons of professional hockey in the AHL, ECHL and CHL. In 2004-05, the Pickering, Ontario native debuted with the CHL’s Laredo Bucks, totaling 35 points and 103 penalty minutes in 60 games. One year later, he was teammates with Nailers’ head coach Jeff Christian in Youngstown, Ohio, as Christian and Lloyd finished first and third respectively on the Steelhounds in scoring. Lloyd’s first three ECHL campaigns came as a member of the Victoria Salmon Kings, with whom he compiled 19, 26 and 36 points. After that, he joined the Kalamazoo Wings for the two most productive seasons of his career. In 2009-10, Lloyd set a career high with 20 goals, and one year later, he racked up 51 points – also a career best – as the K-Wings reached the Kelly Cup Finals. He appeared in all 72 regular-season games during his final years with Victoria and Kalamazoo. The power forward has eclipsed the 100-penalty minute mark in all seven of his pro seasons in North America.

Lloyd also played three seasons of junior hockey in the OHL – all with the Windsor Spitfires from 2001-04. In his first season, the Spitfires reached the Western Conference Final, before falling in five games to the eventual champion Erie Otters. The following year, he notched 36 points, before concluding his junior career by potting 21 goals as a 19-year old.