BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - The Bakersfield Condors, ECHL affiliate of the Edmonton Oilers, announced today that the team has agreed to terms with 2010-11 All-ECHL First Team D Wes Cunningham and high-scoring C Joel Broda. With today's announcement, the Condors have nine players (6 F, 3 D) on the team's 2013-14 training camp roster.
Cunningham, 26, enters his sixth professional year in 2013-14 after spending the 2012-13 campaign in Norway with Lorenskog. Overseas, the 5'11", 185 lbs. blueliner scored eight goals and added 13 assists for 21 points and plus-25 (+25) rating in 38 regular season games. In the playoffs, he tallied 10 points (3g-7a) in seven games.
A veteran of 271 games at the ECHL and American Hockey
League (AHL) levels, Cunningham was named to the 2010-11 All-ECHL First Team as a member of the Greenville Road Warriors. In 69 games that season, the London, Ontario native potted seven goals and 36 assists for 43 points with a +19 rating, good for third among ECHL defensemen in scoring. His ECHL career split between Elmira and Greenville has spanned 265 games with an outstanding 156 points (29g-127a) from the blue line and he has been a "plus" player in each of his professional seasons.
"I was looking for a change and of all the teams I talked to, Bakersfield had the best organization," Cunningham said. "I'll bring experience, leadership, and I'll look to lead by example. I'm more of an offensive-minded defenseman, but well-rounded and I'll drop the gloves if needed. Whatever the team needs to have a good year."
"He's still young, just 26 years old, but a veteran with 271 games, and a guy who can develop further as a player. He's a number one defenseman who will anchor our power play. He's motivated to get to the next level and rightfully so."
Broda, 23, returns to Bakersfield, a place he was assigned to by the Minnesota Wild in 2010-11, after signing a three-year National Hockey League (NHL) entry level contract. The Yorkton, Saskatchewan native enjoyed tremendous success, scoring 17 goals and assisting on 13 others for 30 points in 32 games. He finished fifth on the team in scoring that season despite his brief stint and had five multi-goal games during that time. He added a goal for the Condors in the 2011 ECHL All-Star Classic held in Bakersfield.
The bulk of Broda's professional career has come in the AHL with the Houston Aeros, Minnesota's affiliate during his contracted years. In 124 games with Houston, the 6'0", 210 lbs. center notched 38 points (21g-17a). His best season came in 2011-12 when he put up 14 goals and 13 assists for 27 points in 72 games. Drafted in the 5th round (#144) of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft by the Washington Capitals, Broda won a Western Hockey League (WHL) Championship with the Calgary Hitmen 2009-10 and led the league in goals with 53 in 2008-09.
"I enjoyed my time in Bakersfield and from talking with Troy (Mann) and John (Olver), there was interest there," said Broda. "I'm motivated to play well and there is a great opportunity to have a good year. Since my time in Bakersfield, I've matured as a player and got stronger in the physical and defensive aspects of the game. I'm looking forward to bringing more of my offensive side this season."
"He's an excellent goal scorer that I'm familiar with from development camps with the Capitals. When his name came across the board, having spent time in Bakersfield before, it was a no-brainer. He wants to get back to the AHL as quick as possible and he is motivated to have a successful season."
Information provided by the Bakersfield Condors.
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