ECHL: Cincinnati Cyclones Assign 33 Players to Protected List

Photo: Hector Urcia | Inside The Rink
33 Players Assigned to Protected List

List of Forwards Protected:

 Kyle Bollers, Luka Burzan, Louie Caporusso, Kieran Craig, Mike Ferraro, Zane Franklin, Elijah Gonsalves, Lincoln Griffin, Ben Hawerchuk, Nick Isaacson, Colton Kalezic, Noah Kane, Lee Lapid, Jarrett Lee, Remy Parker, Patrick Polino, Luke Santerno, Brandon Schultz, Jimmy Soper, Keanan Stewart, Justin Vaive and Alex Wideman. 

The Cyclones took steps to protect their captain, Justin Vaive, who played in only 42 games last season and is expected to make a strong comeback with the team. Other key forwards such as Louie Caporusso, Lincoln Griffin, and Patrick Polino were also protected. Polino was the leading scorer among the forwards last year, with 23 goals and 35 assists. The team faced numerous injuries last season, and now the top forwards are focused on regaining their form and making a strong push for the Kelly Cup.

List of Defensemen Protected:

Sean Allen, Josh Burnside, Landon Cato, Jack Clement, Cole Fraser, Steven MacLean, Joe Masonius, Carter Robertson, and Jalen Smereck.

The majority of the key defensemen were protected for the Cyclones, notably including Jalen Smereck, Sean Allen, Josh Burnside, and Cole Fraser. Last season, Jalen Smereck led the team with 71 points and was second in the ECHL in assists. He will be a major piece in this team’s development along with young defenseman Cole Fraser, who aims to build off last season but is facing an injury that will likely leave him out for at least half of the upcoming regular season. Also, Sean Allen, known as “The Sheriff,” is the Cyclones’ most physical player in my opinion. He will be an enforcer on the ice for them in the upcoming 2024-2025 season. He is known for being a tough, big-body defenseman who can use his force to spark momentum for the team in fights. You can read an in-depth review of the 2023-2024 season below:

Related Post: ECHL: Cincinnati Cyclones 2023-2024 Season Recap | Inside The Rink

Goaltenders Protected:

Michael McNiven and Rylan Parenteau.

NHL Affiliate TBD Soon?

On May 30th, the New York Rangers decided to end their affiliation with the Cincinnati Cyclones as their ECHL Affiliate and instead announced a new partnership with the Bloomington Bison. This change follows a one-year affiliation between New York and the Cyclones. As a result of this move, several NHL teams, including Utah, ColumbusCarolinaToronto, and St. Louis, now have an opportunity to establish a partnership with the Cyclones. In my opinion, though, it’s an ideal time for three Ohio hockey teams to finally join forces.

It’s unfortunate that the Cyclones will likely lose their two main goaltenders from last season, Olof Lindbom and Talyn Boyko, due to the end of their affiliation with the New York Rangers. Boyko recently played in a Calder Cup Playoff game with the former AHL affiliate Hartford Wolf Pack, but they lost to the Hershey Bears. The reason for this potential loss is that both goalies were signed to NHL contracts with the New York Rangers, which means the Cyclones are unable to protect them. As a result, they could potentially face one or both of these goalies when playing against the Cyclones’ new ECHL opponent, Bloomington Bison.

Related Post: Which NHL Team Should Pick Up the Cincinnati Cyclones as their ECHL Affiliate

Matthew Buhrmann

Writer at Inside the Rink l Covering Cincinnati Cyclones l Student @uofcincy l @Mbuhrmann61 on socials

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