Fort Wayne, Ind. – The Fort Wayne Komets announced that forward Shawn Szydlowski and defenseman Drew Daniels have agreed to terms and will return to the Fort Wayne lineup for 2015-16. Also, the Komets announced that one of the top scorers in European competition, P.J. Fenton has agreed to terms for the upcoming season.
The Komets are the ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Colorado Avalanche and the American Hockey League’s San Antonio Rampage.
Szydlowski, 24, returns for his third season of play in Fort Wayne. The right winger registered a career year last season leading the Komets with 38 goals and 74 points in 57 games and was named the Komets Most Valuable Player of the year while also earning a spot on the All-ECHL First Team. Szydlowski also appeared in 11 AHL games with Binghamton, Lake Erie and Norfolk.
The St. Clair Shores, Mich. native made his pro debut in 2010-11 skating two games at the end of the season with the AHL’s Portland Pirates after completing a four-year juniors career with Erie of the Ontario Hockey League. Szydlowski signed a three-year, entry level NHL contract with the Buffalo Sabres as an undrafted free agent prior to appearing in 53 AHL games with Rochester in 2011-12. The skater first joined the Komets in 2013-14 on assignment from Rochester, scoring 26 points (11g-15a) in 63 games. Szydlowski has amassed ECHL totals of 103 points (50g-53a) and 96 penalty minutes in 126 games.
Daniels, 26, led Fort Wayne defensemen last season with 45 points (4g-41a) and ranked second among ECHL defensemen with 41 assists while appearing in all 72 regular-season games. The Suffern, N.Y. native also shared the ECHL Plus Performer of the Year Award with a +46 rating and was named Fort Wayne’s Defenseman of Year.
During the 2013-14 season, the defenseman split the season with Cincinnati and Utah. Daniels made his pro debut in the Central Hockey League in 2012-13 appearing in 63 regular season games and 12 playoff games with the Allen Americans en route to the Presidents’ Cup championship. Prior to turning pro, Daniels logged a three-year collegiate career with Northeastern University in Hockey East after being selected by the San Jose Sharks in the seventh round (194th overall) of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. Daniels has scored 52 points (5g-47a) while accumulating 52 penalty minutes in 129 ECHL games.
Fenton, 30, will be in the Fort Wayne lineup celebrating his eighth pro career year. The forward completed last season leading Landshut in the DEL 2 German league with European career highs of 40 assists and 64 points in 51 games.
Fenton began a collegiate career with the University of Massachusetts-Amherst in 2004-05 in Hockey East and was named to the Hockey East All-Academic Team and All-Rookie Team while claiming the team’s Rookie of the Year Award. Subsequently, he was selected by San Jose in the fifth round (162md overall) of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. The forward completed his four-year college career in 2008 before capping the season with four AHL games with Worcester. Fenton made his European debut in 2009-10 with Heilbronner in the Germany 2 league and skated 47 games in 2011-12 with Bietigheim where he led the Steelers with 35 assists, 62 points and 100 penalty minutes. The Springfield, Mass. native captured the Germany 2 Championship with Bietigheim in 2012-13 while leading the team with 28 goals and ranking second with 62 points in 48 games.