BRAMPTON, ON. — The Brampton Beast continued their extended road trip to close out 2016 with games against the Fort Wayne Comets, Toledo Walleye and finally against the Indy Fuel on the afternoon of New Year’s Day. The Beast split the first two games with a 2-1 win over the Walleye and a hard-fought loss to Kalamazoo. Brampton started 2017 on a winning note with a 6-3 win over Kalamazoo.
Brampton has made a few roster moves after numerous players were called up to the St. John’s IceCaps of the AHL. David Ling, Brandon Billie and Taylor Carnevale were signed to standard player contracts. All three players joined the team in time to suit up for the Beast on their extended road trip.
Forward David Ling is embarking on his third tour of duty with the Beast in his career. He is a 41-year-old former seventh-round NHL draft pick of the Quebec Nordiques back in 1993. Since then, his career has taken him across North America and Europe.
Ling has played professionally since 1995-96 and has suited up for 21 different teams in that span. That includes 93 games played in the NHL for the Montreal Canadiens (3) and the Columbus Blue Jackets (90.) Besides the wealth of experience that Ling brings to the Beast, he also still has a deft scoring touch around the net and will fit nicely on the second line.
Goaltender Brandon Billie was recently signed by the Beast to back up Andrew D’Agostini with the absence of Bryan Pitton (AHL callup) and Zach Fucale (Spengler Cup). The 23-year-old was most recently playing in the FHL this season.
Beast forward David Pacan reached a milestone when he recorded his 20th goal of the season, becoming only the fifth Beast player to accomplish that feat. Pacan has already tied his professional best in goals which he set last year with the South Carolina Stingrays.
Center Taylor Carnevale was signed to fill the vacancy at center for Brampton. The 25-year-old, five-year veteran of the OHL, and five-year pro was most recently playing in the EIHL with the Coventry Blaze. Carnevale has been a consistent scorer wherever he has played and is expected to fill the number two center position, playing alongside Ling.
The exciting news of the week was the play of Zach Fucale with Team Canada at the Spengler Cup in Davos, Switzerland. Fucale began the tournament as the number two goaltender behind veteran, Drew MacIntyre.
An opening game loss by MacIntyre saw Fucale start the second game, and he did not relinquish the net from then on. His play throughout the tournament has once again made Fucale a topic of discussion as he backstopped Team Canada in winning the Spengler Cup. He appears to be regaining his form that made him a second-round draft pick by the Canadiens.
Brampton will return home on January sixth to face the Kalamazoo K Wings. The Beast will then travel to Toledo the following day, and return home on Sunday afternoon to face Kalamazoo once again.