The Alaska Aces today released winger Spencer Bennett, who they acquired last year from ECHL Orlando in a deal for goaltender James Read, to get down to their opening-night roster limit of 23 players.
Bennett, 22, last regular season went 8-6--14 and +8 in 22 games for Alaska. He didn't have a point in five playoff games, and was -4.
"I told Spencer, if he's going to succeed, he's going to need to be on the top two lines and he doesn't fit for us there right now,'' said Aces coach Rob Murray.
The Aces actually have 24 players at the moment, but goaltender Gerald Coleman, coming off offseason hip surgery, will begin the season on the inactive list, giving the Aces 23 players. Teams must submit their opening-night rosters to the league office by 11 a.m. AST Wednesday.
In other tidbits from Tuesday's practice -- the Aces skated at Ben Boeke Arena because Sullivan Arena was being set up for their annual season ticket-holders gathering this evening -- goalie Joni Ortio arrived from Abbotsford for his first practice in Alaska. Also, rookie center Eli Zuck remained off the ice -- he worked out off-ice -- with a lower-body injury. Dustin Molle, a defenseman who occasionally saw time on the wing last season as the 10th forward in the lineup, skated at wing.
Here were the lines at practice today:
Zuck (did not skate)
If you count Molle as a forward, the Aces have eight D-men -- Kane Lafranchise, Sean Curry, Corey Syvret, James Martin, Zach Davies, B.J. Crum, Brad Richard and Ben Parker.
Three goalies -- Ortio, Mark Guggenberger and Coleman.
More on all of these developments, and some other stuff, later today at adn.com/alaska-aces-hockey and Wednesday in the dead-trees edition of the ADN.