Photos: Jessica Raymond; Louisiana IceGators
The Quad City Mallards have signed forwards Tyler Barr and Jamie Wise, the Mallards announced today.
Barr, 25, played for both the Central Hockey League’s St. Charles Chill and the Southern Professional Hockey League’s Louisiana IceGators last season. The rugged 6’ 2”, 215-pound North Vancouver native picked up an assist and piled up 52 penalty minutes in a dozen games with the Chill. In 34 games with Louisiana he scored four goals, totaled 14 points and finished ninth in the SPHL in penalty minutes (160). Barr saw a full season of action in 2013-14 after playing just a single game- for the IceGators- in 2012-13.
“Barr doesn’t back down and he has a strong work ethic. He not only works hard but also hits hard and as people in the Quad Cities know, I like hard checks and physical play,” said Mallards coach and general manager Terry Ruskowski. “He’ll do what he has to do to protect our guys who may not be inclined to get involved in altercations.”
Barr is reuniting with Ruskowski after first playing for the Mallards’ boss in 2011-12 when Ruskowski was behind the bench of the CHL’s Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees. Barr skated in eight games- and scored his first CHL goal- for the Killer Bees, who were one of a trio of clubs for whom he played during that campaign. He also notched two goals and two assists along with 107 penalty minutes in 23 games with the CHL’s Texas Brahmas. Despite playing just 28 games with the New Jersey Outlaws of the Federal Hockey League, Barr finished fourth in the FHL in penalty minutes (161) and also scored seven times and recorded a dozen points.
Barr spent his first two professional seasons with the SPHL’s Pensacola Ice Flyers. As a rookie in 2009-10, he produced a pair of goals and four assists in 46 games. The following year Barr finished fourth in the SPHL in penalty minutes (217) while scoring six goals and registering 16 points in 53 games.
Barr turned professional after competing for three-plus seasons in the Canadian junior A ranks with the Burnaby Express, Langley Chiefs and Merritt Centennials of the British Columbia Hockey League and the Spruce Grove Saints of the Alberta Junior Hockey League. He scored 13 goals and posted 33 points while ringing up 522 penalty minutes in 130 career junior games. Barr finished second in the BCHL in penalty minutes (187) in 2007-08 while suiting up for Merritt. The following season he piled up 203 minutes in penalties in 34 games with Spruce Grove.
Wise, 23, joins the Mallards after two standout seasons at Ryerson University in Toronto. Last year the 6’, 205-pound Stouffville, Ontario product finished second in Canadian university hockey in goals (21), finished third in points (45) and was tied for fourth in power play goals (8).
“We want kids who work hard and are good players but can also score and Wise is one of those guys,” said Ruskowski. “He scored last year and in junior. We know he can play and score and he can also play physical. Before he gets here he’ll be playing with the Chicago Blackhawks in rookie camp.”
Wise has been tapped to play for the Blackhawks’ team in the National Hockey League rookie tournament beginning Saturday in London, Ontario. Wise and other Chicago prospects will compete in three games against rookie teams from the Toronto Maple Leafs, Pittsburgh Penguins and Ottawa Senators.
Before arriving at Ryerson, Wise skated for three seasons in the major junior Ontario Hockey League with the Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors and Peterborough Petes. In 2010-11 helped the Majors finish first overall in the OHL and reach the J. Ross Roberston Cup finals. Wise’s final junior season was his most productive- he scored 31 times and registered 48 points in 59 games with Mississauga in 2011-12. Wise made the move to the OHL from the Ontario Junior Hockey League’s Newmarket Hurricanes, for whom he played for parts of three seasons.
The Mallards will open their eighteenth season on home ice Friday, October 24 at 7:05 p.m. against the Rapid City Rush. 2014-15 Mallards season tickets are now on sale. Ticket packages are available to meet almost any budget. A limited edition season ticket holder Mallard jersey, 12 additional ticket vouchers per seat and free parking are among a host of exclusive benefits available to season ticket holders. For more season ticket information fans can call the Mallards’ business office at 309-277-1364.