Flames Sign Dunbar
After finishing as the league’s assist leader and 2nd in overall points, a performance that earned him status as an Elite League 2nd All-star selection, John Dunbar has agreed a return to the Flames for 2018-2019. Selected by his teammates as the club’s ‘player’s player of the year’, the 26 year old skater posted 81 points in league play, just 2 off the leader, and across all competitions had 25 goals and 66 assists to finish with a total of 91 points in 65 games. The 5’8”, 175lb skater arrived at Spectrum fresh off a 19 goal, 50 point showing at Norfolk Admirals of the East Coast Hockey League that followed a short stint at French 2nd league outfit Mulhouse, where he had 6 goals and 7 assists in 8 starts before the American transfer.
“I’m excited to be coming back to Guildford next season,” offered Dunbar. “I am really looking forward to building on what we had last year. We had an amazing group, and that played a big impact on me wanting to come back. I can’t wait to play in front of all the awesome Flames fan again, and work towards doing something special next season.”
During the 2014-2015 and 2015-2016 seasons, the Calgary native played college hockey at Edmonton’s Northern Alberta Institute of Technology where he was the league’s leading scorer in consecutive years thanks to 65 and 57 point terms in a combined 64 games where he delivered 54 goals and 68 assists. His team collected back to back league titles and he was also singled out as Player of the year, and a First All Star team selection, in each of the terms.
Dunbar played a pair of full time seasons with Calgary Canucks in the Alberta Junior Hockey League where he was an All Rookie team selection in 2008-2009 and a Southern Conference All Star in 2009-2010. In 145 AJHL games, he had 62 goals and 95 assists along with another 22 points in 25 playoff starts. He followed that with a couple of NCAA seasons at Quinnipiac University ahead of his first foray in the pro game with Pensacola Ice Flyers in the Southern Professional Hockey League in 2012-2013. That season also marked his first ECHL try when he played 17 times with Fort Wayne Komets. He split the following schedule between those same clubs before moving closer to home with his NAIT success.
“We are stating the obvious when we say we are pleased to have retained a guy who had the success John did last season,” admitted Head Coach Paul Dixon.
“John is clearly a gifted offensive player, and he was consistent from start to finish in his contribution to that part of our game. He was worthy of the award recognition he received for his service.”
“He is fun to be around because he just loves playing hockey, and usually does it with a smile on his face, so in that regard he also had a very positive impact on the overall mood of our dressing room throughout the ups and downs of the season.”
“He is certainly a great addition to a good start to our off season re-build, and we look forward to his August return.”