The Orlando Solar Bears have announced their 2017 ECHL Protected List. The team has included 21 players on its protected list, including 12 forwards, seven defensemen and two goaltenders.
Teams are allowed to protect as many players as they wish, provided the players protected meet the guidelines defined in the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the ECHL and the Professional Hockey Players’ Association which states teams shall retain the rights to each player that:
- Signed an SPC in 2016-17 with the Member, and has not been traded or released, OR
- Signed an SPC in 2016-17, and was recalled to the NHL/AHL or IIHF team, and has not been traded or released, OR
- Had received a Qualifying Offer last summer for the current Season, DID NOT sign an SPC, and has not been traded or released, OR
- Has been suspended by the Member or League, and has not been traded or released, OR
- Signed an SPC on or after the first day of the 2016-17 Regular Season, then subsequently signed an NHL/AHL contract, and has not been traded or released, OR
- Has executed the ECHL Retirement Form, and has not been traded or released.
Orlando’s list includes 5 Veterans; Denver Manderson, Ethan Werek, Eric Baier, Taylor Doherty, Trevor Ludwig. Teams are allowed no more than 4 Veteran players (players with more than 260 regular season games at the ECHL level or above at the beginning of the season). The previously announced retirement of Eric Baier gets the Solar Bears under the threshold.
Teams must complete all Future Consideration trades by 3 p.m. ET on June 13, and teams must submit their Season-Ending Roster by 3 p.m. ET on June 15. ECHL teams can begin to sign players to contracts on June 16.
The Solar Bears announced that two players have signed contracts to play in Europe next season. Eric Faille, who was signed with the Mariles, but played mostly for Orlando in 2016-17, has signed with HC Banska Bystrica (Slovakia) for the 2017-18 season. Justin Buzzeo, an ECHL’er who Orlando traded for from Atlanta, signed with Graz 99ers (Austria).
Eric Baier, of course, has retired, but just in case he decides to return, the Solar Bears have his rights.