Kenny Reiter has taken the long road to the pros, but the journey has paid off with one more milestone.
The New York Islanders have signed the undrafted Bridgeport Sound Tiger to his first NHL (two-way) contract at age 27. Reiter is in just his second full pro season after signing with Bridgeport at the end of 2011-12, when he finished a three-year NCAA career with the University of Minnesota-Duluth.
The Pittsburgh native split time in 2012-13 between Bridgeport and ECHL Fort Wayne, but he has been a fixture for the Sound Tigers this season while Anders Nilsson has received recalls to the Islanders, and Parker Milner has seen spot duty on recall from ECHL Stockton.
Reiter's stats are not stunning, but he had the best numbers in Bridgeport last season (12 GP, .916 in just 546 min.) and has slightly better AHL numbers in 15 games (.895, 858 min., 7-5-2) than Nilsson (.893, 1132 min., 5-12-2) this season. Both are small but mildly growing samples, prone to all the deceptive noise that comes with goalie numbers.
It's a move some Isles fans have requested for a while -- mostly out of desperation with the Isles' goalie depth -- but it still has long odds to mean much of anything.
In any case, Evgeni Nabokov's second appearance on Injured Reserve this season makes this a logical insurance policy, gives the Isles flexibility in case they want both Kevin Poulin and Nilsson getting reps at the same time, and serves as a nice little reward for Reiter for sticking with it.
- [Gameday Bits] Spent the Last Year Rocky Mountain Way
- Diagram: The Subtle Brilliance of the John Tavares Hat Trick Goal
- Thomas Vanek Realistic on Contract Extension Talks with New York Islanders
- Islanders News: Goring with de Haan on Hamonic; Vanek on Long Island; Bridgeport PTOs
- NHL Power Rankings 1/7/14: If not hope, at least regulation wins
- Olympic Hockey Rosters: Canada names John Tavares, Austria selects Thomas Vanek, Michael Grabner