It’s been a long road to hopefully hitting the NHL for Islanders prospect Tanner Fritz – but with his new contract, he’s eligible to potentially make his debut sometime in the coming years.
It was confirmed on Wednesday afternoon that Fritz has inked a two way deal with the Islanders, set to kick in at the start of the 2017-18 season. This will render him eligible for the first time in his pro hockey career to be recalled to the NHL level.
A native of Grand Prairie, Alberta, Fritz skated for the AJHL’s Grand Prairie Storm for four seasons before heading to play NCAA hockey at Ohio State University.
The 5-foot-11 forward would skate out for Ohio State for all four of his eligible collegiate seasons, wrapping up his senior year with 11 goals and 27 points.
He didn’t manage to sign an entry-level deal with the Islanders out of college, instead getting a deal at the minor league level. He’s been down with the AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers and the ECHL’s Missouri Mavericks for the last two seasons, though – and after putting up a whopping 40 points in 61 AHL games this year, the team seems ready to give him a major pro deal.
For the Islanders, this likely only gives them a potential call-up in emergencies. For Fritz, though, this is a huge step in his pro hockey career – and with the hope of an NHL debut on the horizon, that’s fantastic news.