Vet Forward Brandon DeFazio Joins Texas Stars

The Texas Stars picked up a late free agent signing today with Brandon DeFazio joining the fold. The forward is a solid AHL journeyman who has racked up 359 games across four different teams. His playoff experience in Utica is notable as he went to the Calder Cup Finals with the Comets.

For what it's worth, the signing of DeFazio is probably partly connected to Justin Dowling's veteran status. In a bit of a silver lining, Justin Dowling's injury this season kept him under the 260 games and means that he does not qualify as a veteran this year. Therefore, the club can afford to sign another veteran toward the limit.

Here's the release:
The Texas Stars, American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Dallas Stars, announced Monday the club has signed forward Brandon DeFazio to an AHL contract for the upcoming 2016-17 season.

DeFazio, 27, is set to begin his sixth full season in the AHL and has appeared in 359 career games between the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, Bridgeport Sound Tigers, Utica Comets and Providence Bruins. The 6-foot-2, 200-pound forward also brings 33 games of Calder Cup playoff experience to the Stars. DeFazio (deh-FAH-zee-oh) was a part of the 2014-15 Utica team that reached the Calder Cup Final before falling to the Manchester Monarchs in five games.

The Oakville, Ontario native tallied 43 points in each of the past two AHL seasons, and also reached the 20-goal mark in both of those campaigns. His 21 goals in 2014-15 led Utica during the regular season. Prior to his pro career, he was a four-year player at Clarkson University from 2007-2011.

DeFazio made his NHL debut with the Vancouver Canucks on Nov. 9, 2014, in a 2-1 shootout win over the Anaheim Ducks.