NY Islanders: Veteran forward Tanner Fritz is signing back with Bridgeport

New York Islanders v New Jersey Devils
New York Islanders v New Jersey Devils / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages

A forward short on their roster, the Bridgeport Islanders have reportedly signed 32-year-old veteran forward Tanner Fritz to a one-way contract, according to Jacob Stoller of The Hockey News.

Fritz's history with the AHL team of the New York Islanders goes back to the 2015-16 season. After serving as captain of his Ohio State team, Fritz started his professional career with the Missouri Mavericks of the ECHL. During that season, he tried out and made the team in Bridgeport, scoring two goals and ten assists in 12 games.

The following season, Fritz asserted himself as a player with a chance to contribute at the NHL level, scoring 19 goals and 23 assists for Bridgeport in 63 games. That season earned a one-year, two-year contract with the Islanders. He averaged better than a point per game the following AHL season, scoring ten goals and 28 assists in just 35 games.

Those numbers resulted in him being chosen to represent Bridgeport at the 2018 AHL All-Star Classic in Utica, NY, but he missed the game for a good reason - he was called up to the NHL by the Islanders. He made his NHL debut on Jan. 2, 2018, vs. the Boston Bruins and scored his first NHL goal on Feb. 19, 2019, against the Minnesota Wild.

He played 34 games for the Islanders during the 2017-18 season and eight more the following year. In 42 total games, he scored three goals and added eight assists. He played parts of three more seasons with Bridgeport before signing with the Hartford Wolfpack, the AHL affiliate of the New York Rangers, and played there the last two seasons. He had 43 points (10G, 33A) last year.