ECHL: Wichita Thunder Announce First Two Players of 2024-25 Preseason Roster

Wichita Thunder/ECHL

WICHITA, Kan. – The Wichita Thunder opened up their player signing announcements with a bang on Monday, announcing the return of two offensive stalwarts to the Air Capital.

Jay Dickman will return for his second season as player/assistant and is looking for a third straight career-best season. The 31-year-old forward from St. Paul, MN set new highs in goals (29), assists (40) and points (69) and led the team in scoring during the 2023-24 campaign. Dickman was also named team MVP this past year. The 6-foot-6, 215-pound forward was tied for first in the ECHL with 15 power-play goals. 

Over his Thunder career, Dickman has racked up 237 points (95g, 142a) in 281 games in a Wichita uniform. He was acquired in a trade during the 2019-20 season with the Indy Fuel. The Minnesota native had two goals and one assist for three points with Indy before being acquired; he also played in three games with the Florida Everblades at the end of the 2018-19 season, where he picked up his first career ECHL point with an assist.

Peter Bates returns to the United States after spending the end of last season playing overseas in Slovakia, where he put up a goal and an assist in five games. Before leaving the Thunder, Bates was having a career season, piling up 50 points (23g, 27a) in 45 games and being selected to the 2024 Warrior ECHL All-Star Classic. He was third in the league in goals and third in points when he was chosen as the Thunder’s All-Star representative. 

Thunder head coach Bruce Ramsay said in a recent interview he hopes to have his roster signed very soon, which implies more signing announcements are coming.

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