Toronto also inks Ross, Johnston, Lum-Walker, Hostrawser, England & Fryer
The Toronto Rock have announced the signing of seven players including veteran forward and rising star Rob Hellyer to a three-year agreement. Toronto also signed forward Kevin Ross to a two-year deal and defenders Scott Johnston, Mike Lum-Walker, Bill Hostrawser and Craig England along with goaltender Steve Fryer all to one-year contracts. All signings are pending league approval.
Hellyer enjoyed a breakout season in 2014 after becoming a regular in his fourth NLL season. Over his first three seasons, Hellyer had seen limited action but was put into a primetime role last season that became even larger when the Rock lost MVP candidate Garrett Billings to a season-ending knee injury.
“Rob excelled in an increased role in 2014,” said Rock general manager Terry Sanderson. “We think this is just a sign of things to come for him and we’re excited to have Rob as a part of the long-term plans with the Rock.”
The 22-year old from Lion’s Head, ON scored a career-high 79 points (29 goals, 50 assists) in 18 games in 2014. Those numbers crushed his previous career-high of 11 points, which he scored in both 2011 and 2013. His regular season point total ranked him third on the Rock in scoring behind only Billings (101 points) and Stephan Leblanc (88 points) and 11th overall in the NLL scoring race. Over the final 3 games of the season, Hellyer scored 19 points while Billings was out of the lineup. He also had a career-high 12-point (3 goals, 9 assists) game in an April 5th win over the Vancouver Stealth.
In his rookie season of 2011, Hellyer won the NLL title with the Rock and scored one of Toronto’s 8 goals in their 8-7 win over the Stealth to capture the team’s sixth NLL title.
Adding to Toronto’s depth up front, seven-year NLL veteran Kevin Ross returns to the fold. The Toronto, ON native was signed as a free agent just after the 2014 trade deadline in March after the left-handed scorer hit waivers late in the season. In just two games with the Rock, Ross scored 3 goals and added 5 assists for 8 points in 2014.
Defenseman Scott Johnston will return for his 4th season in a Rock uniform while Mike Lum-Walker, Craig England and Bill Hostrawser will all be back for their second season in a Toronto uniform. Between the pipes, netminder Steve Fryer will also return for his second season with the Rock.