Gladiators increase roster by three

DULUTH, Ga. – The Atlanta Gladiators announced that the team has agreed to terms with forwards Justin MacDonald and Austin McKay as well as defenseman Vytal Cote.

The Gladiators are the ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League's Boston Bruins and the American Hockey League's Providence Bruins.

MacDonald, 27, joins the Gladiators from the Fort Wayne Komets where he earned nine points (5g-4a) in 28 games and added a goal and an assist in 13 playoff games. The Newmarket, Ontario native also skated in five games for the Adirondack Thunder, and produced 24 points (12g-12a) in 16 games for the Evansville Thunderbolts of the Southern Professional Hockey League last season. The eight-year pro has a total of 252 points (109g-143a) in 241 games in the SPHL and Federal Hockey League. In 117 career ECHL contests, MacDonald has accumulated 50 points (24g-26a) for Evansville, Indy, Cincinnati, Fort Wayne and Adirondack.    

McKay, 27, skated the entire 2017-18 season with the Greenville Swamp Rabbits amassing a career-high 23 points (10g-13a) in 61 games. During his first pro season in 2016-17, he appeared in three games for the Gladiators notching one assist. The Toronto, Ontario native also registered six points (4g-2a) in 11 games for the Rapid City Rush during his rookie campaign. The third-year pro spent the rest of that year in the SPHL with Evansville and the Pensacola Ice Flyers where he posted a total of 30 points (11g-19a) in 39 games. McKay obtained 13 career points (8g-5A) over four full seasons at Lake Superior State and served as the Lakers’ captain during his senior campaign in 2015-16.

Cote, 22, recorded one assist and 62 penalty minutes in 35 combined ECHL games last season with Adirondack, Greenville and Fort Wayne. He appeared in 17 games for the SPHL’s Mississippi RiverKings and tallied 12 points (4g-8a) and a +8 rating. During his rookie campaign in 2016-17, the Hollywood, Florida native listed nine points (1g-8a) in 40 games with Evansville, and two points (1g-1a) in 10 games with Fayetteville of the SPHL. Prior to turning pro, Cote engineered 34 points (7g-27a) in 159 games in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.