Undrafted sixth year center Justin Hodgman(12) had already won two IHL Turner Cup Championships with Fort Wayne Komets while he was still playing in the OHL with Erie Otters.
He was also named MVP in both those seasons with a combined 14 goals and 12 assists in 24 playoff games.
These scoring totals were much in line with his last three seasons of juniors, where he averaged a point-per-game.
In his rookie year he was even allowed while under contract with Toronto Marlies to be released back to the Komets to play for their third straight title.
From there he played a full season for the Marlies, despite a brief 3 ECHL game stint with Reading Royals.
His point totals were even half decent at 12 goals and 17 assists in 42 AHL games with a +7 rating.
But by the next season he split for Europe and agreed for a year with Pelicans of Liiga in Finland.
The 6’1″ 203 lbs. forward continued to climb the hockey ladder spending his next pair of campaigns in the KHL mostly with Metallurg Magnitogorsk.
For 2014/2015 he decided to return home and seek out a deal closer to home.
Arizona Coyotes unceremoniously signed him to a one-year, two-way contract. He was on the opening night roster after a fantastic training camp in which he netted a team high 4 preseason goals.
Although very much pleasantly surprised by his efforts, he sat the first two games as a healthy scratch before being reassigned to minor league affiliate Portland Pirates. He played three games at the beginning of their season, recording no points.
Recalled quickly due to an injury, he made his NHL debut count, scoring the game-tying goal on his only shot on net, skated 16 shifts and 11:27 total time on ice with 2 penalty minutes.
The 26-year old has made quite the journey through 3 minor leagues and 2 pro leagues overseas to finally get his opportunity in the show.
Original story: 10/28-14
After his first year back in North America after 3 seasons overseas and his 1st NHL goal, the recently turned 27-year old signs for 2015/2016 with St. Louis Blues on another two-way deal.
He skated in 5 games with Arizona Coyotes on two recalls and played in a new AHL high 62 games with a new best 24 assists and 35 points.
He just may make the parent club out of training camp, but even if he heads to start the season with affiliate Chicago Wolves he’ll likely be one of the first from the farm club to get summoned.