The Red Wings’ AHL and ECHL affiliates opened their training camps on Monday, and the Toledo Blade’s Mark Monroe checked in with the Toledo Walleye:
[Defenseman Matt] Register put on a Walleye jersey for the first time Monday as the organization opened its 10th training camp. The Calgary native was one of six defensemen who Watson put through their paces at the Huntington Center, along with 14 forwards and three goaltenders.
“The first day today, I was impressed,” Register said. “There was speed. There was good execution. They have a great track record here. It’s a winning culture.”
Five players in the Walleye’s training camp were assigned to the team from its NHL parent club in Detroit.
Forwards Jordan Topping, Dylan Sadowy, and Bryan Moore as well as goaltenders Pat Nagle and Kaden Fulcher all were in preseason camp with the Red Wings.
Fulcher, 20, led the Hamilton Bulldogs to an Ontario Hockey League title last season. The first-year pro appeared in 55 regular-season games for the major junior hockey team last regular season.
“First off, [Toledo is] a pretty unbelievable place to play,” Fulcher said after practice. “I’ve heard from the guys just how special it is here and how good the fan support is. It’s first class. It’s well run. Everyone is on the same page. I’m really excited to be here.”
Smith joins Toledo after being released from the AHL camp of the Colorado Eagles. The native of Windsor, Ontario spent last season in Kansas City where in 35 games he scored nine goals with eight assists and 47 penalty minutes. Smith spent the previous two years with Stockton of the AHL where the 23-year-old skated in 88 contests for the Heat with five goals, 14 assists, 124 penalty minutes and a plus 10.
The former second round pick (54th overall) by Calgary in the 2014 NHL draft, appeared in 166 career OHL contests from 2011 through 2015. In those contests, Smith scored 40 goals while collecting 91 assists and 263 penalty minutes. The 6’7”, 225 pound forward posted career best numbers in 2014-15 with Oshawa in which he scored 23 times with 26 assists for 49 points in 57 contests. The year he also added another 18 points (9G, 9A) in 21 playoff contests as part of the Generals team that won the Memorial Cup.