The Stockton Thunder, proud ECHL affiliate of the Edmonton Oilers and San Jose Sharks of the National Hockey League, and head coach Matt Thomas announced today that the team has signed rookie free agent defenseman Colten Hayes. Per club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“Colten is a solid, two way defenseman that adds size and skill to our blueline,” said Thomas. “As a right shot, he will give us power play depth and should make an impact offensively as a first year player. He also is a physical player that is going to add toughness to our back end.”
Hayes, 21, joins the Thunder roster after posting career-high totals in points (54), assists (42), goals (12) and penalty minutes (200) in 55 games with the Okotoks Oilers of the Alberta Junior Hockey League last season.
The 6-foot and 180 pound defenseman was named the AJHL’s Outstanding Defenseman last season as recipient of the W.G. Scott Memorial Trophy, given annually to the defensive player who demonstrates the greatest ability in the position throughout the season.
Hayes was also nominated to the 2010-11 AJHL South Division All-League Team and earned six Oilers Player of the Game awards last season.
He has suited up in 159 career junior games with Okotoks and Drumheller of the AJHL and Salmon Arm and Langley of the British Columbia Hockey League, scoring 88 points (19g-69a) and totaling 451 penalty minutes. In 23 career postseason games, he has collected 13 points (2g-11a) and 70 penalty minutes.