The Checkers have added some depth to their roster with the addition of four players on AHL contracts. Defenseman Jake Chelios inked a one-way AHL deal, while goalie Anthony Peters, defenseman Justin Agosta and forward Matt Willows all signed two-way AHL contracts.
Peters, the brother of former Checkers goalie Justin Peters, will be entering his rookie campaign next season. After the conclusion of his four-year stint at St. Mary's University, where he went 52-27-0 with a goals-against average of 2.58 and a save percentage of .911, the netminder signed with the Florida Everblades of the ECHL this past March. Peters appeared in two games for the Everblades, winning both and allowing just two goals total. The Ontario native also made his AHL debut late last season after signing a PTO with the Rochester Americans, going 1-6-0 in seven games. Peters earned the CIS Goaltender of the Year award in 2014-15 and received CIS All-Canadian First-Team honors. He is also a two-time conference First All-Star and earned a spot on the CIS All-Rookie team in 2011-12. Adding to his accolades, the 24-year-old was named his team's MVP three times during his four-year career. Prior to staring for St. Mary's, Peters spent five seasons in the OHL for Mississauga St. Michael's, Belleville, Saginaw, Kingston and Oshawa, registering a 23-38-9 record in 85 games. His most impressive OHL campaign was his last, when he went 10-2-1 with a goals-against average of 2.46 and a save percentage of .904 in 15 games for the Majors in 2010-11.
Agosta is turning pro after the conclusion of his college career. The 24-year-old blueliner spent his senior season playing for Quinnipiac University, scoring 22 points (3g, 19a) in 39 games, leading all team defensemen. Prior to transferring to Quinnipiac, the New York native spent three seasons at the University of New Hampshire, where he totaled 45 points (9g, 36a) in 116 games. In his final season with the Wildcats, Agosta finished second among team defensemen in scoring with 26 points (6g, 20a) in 41 games.
Willows is also joining the team from the college ranks after completing a four-year career at the University of New Hampshire. The 5-foot-9, 185 lb. forward totaled 90 points (45g, 45a) in 130 games for the Wildcats, ranking third in scoring each of his final two seasons. Another New York native, Willows served as the 2014-15 team captain for New Hampshire, a squad that featured two Carolina prospects in Brett Pesce and Warren Foegele, and has been teammates with fellow signee Agosta since their junior careers in 2009-10.
Chelios, the son of Hall of Fame defenseman Chris Chelios, comes to the team with one professional season under his belt. The blueliner spent the majority of last season with the Chicago Wolves, recording 15 points (1g, 14a) in 41 games, with those 14 helpers good for third among team defensemen. The 24-year-old also spent eight games at the ECHL level last season, scoring three points (1g, 2a) in eight games for the Kalamazoo Wings. Chelios made his pro debut at the tail end of the 2013-14 season, netting one assist in four games for the Wolves and two points (1g, 1a) in seven games for the Wings. Prior to turning pro, Chelios spent four seasons at Michigan State University, totaling 54 points (17g, 37a) in 154 games. During his senior season, he led all Spartan defensemen in scoring.
The conditions of AHL deals work the same as NHL deals, in that players on one-way AHL contracts will make the same amount of money whether they're in the AHL or ECHL, whereas two-way AHL contracts pay players a different salary at the two levels. Given that, these signings could give the Checkers flexibility and depth for their roster.