The Phoenix Coyotes have announced a two-year, two-way deal with defenceman Mark Louis, one-year, two-way deals with Brett Hextall and Brandon McMillan, and have inked goaltender Chris Rawlings to an AHL deal.
Louis, 26, signs a two-year extension just one season after the Coyotes gave him his first NHL deal. After playing his junior with the Brandon Wheat Kings and Red Deer Rebels of the WHL, Louis went undrafted, and subsequently landed in the CIS with St. Francis Xavier University. After his four years in Canadian college, Louis landed an AHL deal with Portland. Louis suited up for 23 games and posted four assists and 72 PIM with the Coyotes top affiliate, and was inked to a one-year deal.
Last season, Louis dressed for 61 regular season games, and put up 3 assists and 111 PIM. His two-year deal will likely see him in Portland for the next two seasons.
Hextall, 25, was a sixth-round pick of the Coyotes in 2008, and came to Portland in 2011-12 after three seasons in at the University of North Dakota. At UND, Hextall was part of back-to-back WCHA Championship teams (2009-10, 2010-11), and tallied 39 goals and 42 assists in 115 games.
The son of Philadelphia Flyers assistant GM Ron Hextall, Brett has spent two years with the Pirates, appearing in 141 games and registered 16 goals and 14 assists.
McMillan, a 23-year-old from Delta, BC., was a third round pick of the Anaheim Ducks in 2008, and first appeared with the Ducks in 2010-11. That season, McMillan suited up in 66 games with the Ducks in his rookie season and scored 12 goals and added 11 assists. However, since his rookie year, McMillan has only appeared in 31 NHL games and spent the majority of his time in the AHL.
Acquired from the Ducks in exchange for Matthew Lombardi, McMillan suited up for five games with the Pirates last season but failed to register a point.
Rawlings, a 24-year-old netminder, spent the previous four seasons with Northeastern University of the NCAA. In his final season with Northeastern, Rawlings posted a 3.22 GAA and .903 SV% in 26 appearances.
At the end of last season, Rawlings spent two games with the ECHL’s Idaho Steelheads and posted a .60 GAA and .975 SV%.
(Cover image by Bridget Samuels)