Forwards Matthew Zay and Alex Wideman will be returning to Binghamton after their brief stints late last season and new guy Daultan Leveille will be joining them. The team also announced defenseman Guillaume Lepine will be brought back after his promotion from the Evansville IceMen and should be a welcome addition on the blue line for the Senators.
The rugged, 28 year old Lepine played in the final 38 games for the Senators and had a goal and three assists while running up 107 PIM. At 6' 4" 218 lb, a big, stay at home defenseman that likes to mix it up with resounding success in his 11 fights in the AHL and six in the ECHL in 2014-'15. Likes to take the body, steady in front of the net and earned a B- in the B-Sens last quarter grades published here. Solid signing.
Wideman is the younger brother of defenseman Chris who was brought over after finishing up at Miami University at Ohio and participated in four contests in getting his feet wet at the professional level. Like his older brother, he's short in stature at 5' 7" 150 lbs but seems to be quick on his feet as the 23 year old gets settled in for next season. Could be a good sign of perhaps Chris in returning to Binghamton one would hope. Average signing (that instantly becomes Great if Chris is involved.)
24 year old Glendale, NY native Zay also saw four games in action for Binghamton and recorded his first professional goal in a 6-3 win against the Albany Devils on Apr 10th. He played for Mercyhurst College the last four years before turning pro before playing three games for the Springfield Falcons. Average signing.
Leveille is the one player of the four that sparks some interest, as he was the 29th pick in the first round by the Atlanta Thrashers in 2008, which included such names as Erik Karlsson, Steven Stamkos and Drew Doughty to name a few. He played in Evansville in 2014-'15 and notched 22 goals with 25 assists in 66 games for the IceMen and saw some action for the Hamilton Bulldogs in 2012-'13 but none so far in the NHL.
The signing of the 24 year old 6' 185 lb. center could spell the end of Derek Grant or Carter Camper as I would have my doubts Leveille starts in Indiana and was signed just as an insurance cause, as there are plenty of those types that are around as the season progresses, not during the off season. Nevertheless, Good signing.
It's a start for things to come next season for Binghamton as they look to rebuild and return to the top after a dismal showing in 2014-'15.
*Cover Pic Courtesy of Alicia Strauch