The Utah Grizzlies have acquired forward Joey Ratelle from the Colorado Eagles to complete future considerations on the Feb. 14 trade that also brought Jake Marchment and Gage Ausmus to Utah.
Ratelle, in his rookie season, was the Eagles leading scorer against Utah with seven goals and four assists for 11 points in 13 games. During the regular season, he was third on Colorado in goals with 23 and had 47 points in 70 games. He was a member of the Colorado team that on Saturday won the ECHL’s Kelly Cup Championship as he had five goals and three assists for eight points in 19 playoff games.
“For a rookie to come in on a team that was just stacked and be able to contribute the way that he did on both ends of the ice; he’s very responsible defensively, he’s tough, he finishes checks, and then to be able to put that many pucks in the net, he’s just a complete hockey player,” said head coach and General Manager Tim Branham.
The 22 year old was tied for fourth in the ECHL with six game-winning goals and scored Colorado’s game-winning goal in two of its last three wins against Utah this season. He recorded his first professional hat trick against Utah on March 23.
At 5-foot-10 and 180 pounds, the Quebec native fought 16 times during the regular season, which was tied for seventh in the ECHL and ranked third among rookies, and he also led rookies with 200 penalty minutes.
“He had a great rookie campaign,” said Branham. “He’s definitely one tough customer, especially for his size. He’ll take on anybody in the league, and he scored a lot of big goals for Colorado. I’m really excited to see what his second year has in store.”
The Grizzlies finished the season, 11-6-3-2, after the Feb. 14 trade as Jake Marchment had 10 goals and nine assists in the final 22 games with Utah and Ausmus, a defenseman, had eight assists and a plus-four.
The Grizzlies open the regular season on Friday, Oct. 12, against Rapid City at Maverik Center.