ECHL: Adirondack Thunder Announce 2024 Kelly Cup Playoff Roster

Cody Conine/InsideTheRink

The Adirondack Thunder released their 24-man Kelly Cup Playoff Roster on Monday Afternoon. The roster consists of 14 forwards, eight defencemen, and two goaltenders. It was a very busy season for the Adirondack Thunder as 47 different skaters took the ice the year, and the Kelly Cup Roster is a nice mix of faces that were with the Thunder on opening night and some who joined the team as late as their final road trip of the regular season. Here is the Adirondack Thunder Roster that will begin their Kelly Cup Run on Friday vs Maine Mariners:

Surprises:

Cody Conine/InsideTheRink

All season, the Thunder had run with three goaltenders, and before the Thunder left for Allen, Pete MacArthur mentioned that Vinnie Purpura was done for the regular season, and now it looks like his season is done along with Tyler Brennan, who went right back to the IR after returning for just one start where he would give four goals and 20 shots on March 30th vs Reading Royals. The tandem of Jeremy Brodeur and Isaac Poulter is easily one of the strongest tandems among playoff teams. He was a surprising addition to the Thunder after having a strong year in Utica and has continued his success with Adirondack as he’s gone 5-0-0-1 with a 2.44 GAA and .917SV% in six starts with the Thunder.

Alex Young, who signed with the Thunder during their trip to Allen, has been a really strong addition to the Thunder lineup. He’s put up two goals and four assists for six points in seven games with the Thunder, and his impact was felt right away when he picked up a goal and an assist in his first pro game while playing on the top line for the Thunder as Shane Harper served the final game of his suspension. Mac Welsher also made the playoff roster, he has three goals and three assists for six points in 13 games this season.

Connor Blake, who was a waiver claim by the Thunder from the Idaho Steelheads, played his heart out this weekend with goals in back-to-back games in the final weekend of the regular season, including the game-winning goal on Saturday Night as Adirondack clinched the top spot in the Eastern Conference. The Calgary native can play either upfront or on the backend for the Thunder. He has two goals and two assists for four points in 13 games with Adirondack, he failed to find the scoresheet in three games with the Steelheads.

Help From Utica

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The Thunder got a lot of help from Utica, with five key players being added to Adirondack’s Kelly Cup Roster. All these players are currently still with the Utica Comets.

D-Will MacKinnon– When the season began, the Thunder had Will MacKinnon and Colin Felix paired up together just like they were during the 2022-23 season when they were one of the best defensive pairs in the ECHL. MacKinnon has been up in Utica ever since the New Year and has played in 37 games with the Comets, putting up three goals and three assists for six points. The Michigan defenseman also isn’t afraid to drop his gloves, and Adirondack can always use another blueliner who isn’t afraid to throw around the body.

F- Timur Imbragimov– There’s a lot to like about Ibragimov, who had three stints this year with Adirondack, playing in 14 games, putting up four goals and eight assists for 12 points. There’s no question that the loss to Patrick Grasso has hurt the Thunder, and guys have stepped up in Adirondack in his absence, but adding a guy like Imbragimov gives Adirondack another scoring threat along with Shane Harper and Tristan Ashbrook, who are first and third in scoring, as Grasso still sits second among Thunder skaters with 21 goals.

F- Filip Engaras– The 24-year-old center spent four games with the Thunder in Late October/Early November and then joined the Thunder for two games in March to help him get his legs back in shape after missing nearly a month with an injury in those six games with Adirondack, Engaras has put up two goals and one assist, he has six goals and six assists in 50 games this year with the Comets. The addition of Engaras gives Head Coach Pete MacArthur another option either on the wing or up the middle.

F- Andre Ghantous– Adirondack has signed a number of players out of college in the last month or so, but the best signing for the Thunder has to be Andre Ghantous. The former Northern Michigan Tech Wildcat has thrived since joining Adirondack as he’s played in 10 games, putting up three goals and 10 assists for 13 points; he’s also played three games with the Utica Comets, where he has a goal and an assist in two games.

F-Erik Middendorf– The 23-year-old forward began the season with the Thunder and would have the occasional call-up to Utica before finally sticking with the Comets in late January. In 24 games with the Comets, the Arizona native has put up four goals and five assists for nine points, he’s put up 18 goals and 14 assists for 32 points in 36 games with Adirondack this season. Middendorf was another one of MacArthur’s finds as he joined the Thunder at the end of last year after spending two years at Michigan State University and would put up a goal and two assists for three points in 11 games with Adirondack last year before earning an AHL deal with the Comets over the Summer.

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Armand Klisivitch

Inside The Rink ECHL Manager | Senior Editor Credentialed Reporter for the Adirondack Thunder & Worcester Railers.

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