ECHL announces 2020-21 All-Rookie Team
The ECHL on Wednesday announced its All-Rookie Team for 2020-21 as determined in a vote of ECHL coaches, broadcasters, media relations directors and media, who were asked to select a goaltender, two defensemen and three forwards.
A rookie is defined as a player who has played in less than 25 professional games at the “AA” level or higher prior to the start of the current season.
2020-21 ECHL All-Rookie Team
G – Evan Weninger, Wichita Thunder (29 gp, 16-8-4, 2.65 GAA, .925 save pct.)
D – Ben Finkelstein, Greenville Swamp Rabbits (33 gp, 11g, 21a, 32 pts.)
D – Dean Stewart, Wichita Thunder (52 gp, 6g, 29a, 35 pts.)
F – Matthew Boucher, Utah Grizzlies (56 gp, 23g, 26a, 49 pts.)
F – Jay Dickman, Wichita Thunder (69 gp, 19g, 28a, 47 pts.)
F – Joseph Garreffa, Orlando Solar Bears (56 gp, 12g, 28a, 40 pts.)
Since the ECHL began naming the All-Rookie Team in 2000-01, 21 players selected have gone on to play in the National Hockey League: Simon Gamache (2001-02); Mike Glumac, Vern Fiddler, Adam Hauser, Jason Jaffray and Zenon Konopka (2002-03); Kevin Doell and Brian Fahey (2003-04); Joey Tenute (2004-05); Cedrick Desjardins (2006-07); David Desharnais and Anton Khudobin (2007-08); Richard Bachman (2009-10); Kael Mouillierat and Ben Street (2010-11); Philipp Grubauer (2011-12); Laurent Brossoit (2013-14); Roman Will (2014-15), Jacob MacDonald and Vitek Vanecek (2015-16) and Landon Bow (2016-17).
The ECHL will announce its First-Team All-ECHL and Second-Team All-ECHL teams on Thursday.
Evan Weninger of the Wichita Thunder leads rookie goaltenders with 16 wins and a 2.65 goals-against average, which are tied for sixth and seventh overall in the league, respectively. He is second among all goaltenders with a .925 save percentage, fourth with 943 saves and eighth with 1,724 minutes played.
Ben Finkelstein of the Greenville Swamp Rabbits is tied for first among rookie defensemen with 11 goals and is second with 30 points while his 105 shots on goal are first among first-year blueliners and his three power-play goals are tied for first.
Dean Stewart of the Wichita Thunder leads rookie blueliners with 35 points and a +21 rating - which is third among all defensemen - and his six goals are fifth among rookie defensemen.
Matthew Boucher of the Utah Grizzlies leads all first-year players with 23 goals and 49 points. He is tied for fourth among rookies with 26 assists, tied for second with four power-play goals and tied for fourth with 11 power-play points.
Jay Dickman of the Wichita Thunder ranks second among ECHL rookies with 19 goals and 47 points, while his 28 assists are tied for second. Dickman’s 156 shots on goal are fourth among first-year players and he leads rookies, and is fifth overall in the league, with a +25 rating.
Joseph Garreffa of the Orlando Solar Bears is tied for second among rookies with 28 assists and tied for third with 40 points. His 112 shots on goal are eighth among first-year players and he is tied for 10th with 12 goals.
About the ECHL
Began in 1988-89 with five teams in four states, the ECHL has grown into a coast-to-coast league with 26 teams in 19 states and two Canadian provinces for its 33rd season in 2020-21. There have been 698 players who have gone on to play in the National Hockey League after starting their careers in the ECHL, including 20 who made their NHL debuts in the 2020-21 season. The ECHL has affiliations with 25 of the 31 NHL teams in 2020-21, marking the 24th consecutive season that the league had affiliations with at least 20 teams in the NHL. Further information on the ECHL is available on its website at ECHL.com as well as on Twitter and Facebook.