Szydlowski returns to Komets for fifth season

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Komets announced Monday that two-time Fort Wayne MVP Shawn Szydlowski has agreed to terms for his fifth straight year on the Komet roster.

“This is a big signing for the Komets and our fans,” Komets general manager David Franke said. “Shawn Szydlowski represents what it takes to be a Komet.  He is gifted offensively, a solid defender and physical when ne needs to be.”

Szydlowski, 27, made his Fort Wayne debut in 2013-14 when he was assigned to the Komets by the AHL’s Rochester Americans.  The winger was named Most Improved Player of the year and led the Komets in the playoffs with six goals and 11 points.

The St. Clair Shores, Michigan native continued his Fort Wayne career leading the Komets in 2014-15 with a career season high 38 goals and adding 36 assists for 74 points in 57 games before capturing his first Fort Wayne MVP honor at the end of the season.  Szydlowski also was named to the All-ECHL First Team.

Szydlowski earned his second MVP award in 2015-16 leading the Komets with 25 goals and career highs of 50 assists and 75 points in 62 games.  In addition, he was named Fort Wayne’s Defensive Forward of the Year and earned a spot on the All-ECHL Second Team before leading the Komets in the playoffs with career highs of 10 goals, nine assists and 19 points in 16 post-season appearances.

Last season Szydlowski scored 25 goals and 66 points in 50 games, reaching the 25-goal mark for the third straight year after serving as captain and a starter for the 2016 ECHL All-Star Classic.  The skater again led the Komets for a third playoff season with seven assists and nine points in 10 games.  Szydlowski also received his second Fort Wayne Defensive Forward of the Season award.

Szydlowski began his pro career signing an entry level NHL contract with Buffalo in 2011 and during his career has also skated AHL stints with Portland, Rochester, Binghamton, Lake Erie/Cleveland and Norfolk.

The winger has amassed ECHL career totals of 100 goals, 144 assists and 244 points in 238 games.  Szydlowski has skated 232 Fort Wayne career regular season games scoring 99 goals, 142 assists and 241 points. Szydlowski will go back to wearing number 27 since number 19 is now retired for Komet legend Terry McDougall.  Szydlowski wore number 27 his first two seasons with the Komets before changing to 19 for the last two campaigns.

The Fort Wayne preseason roster of 15 players includes five defensemen, eight forwards and two goaltenders.