Point-producing forward Tufto inks ECHL deal with Iowa
Coralville, Iowa – The Iowa Heartlanders, proud ECHL affiliate of the Minnesota Wild and Iowa Wild, signed forward Odeen Tufto to an ECHL contract Friday. Tufto is entering his third professional season and has produced just under a point-per-game in his ECHL career (10g, 38 pts. in 48 GP) with Orlando and Atlanta.Tufto also provides AHL experience, skating in eight games with the Syracuse Crunch in parts of two seasons. Last year, the right-handed shot scored seven points in 12 games with Atlanta before moving to Germany’s DEL2, where he tallied 15 points in 12 games for the Krefeld Penguin.Iowa has signed 12 players to ECHL deals for the season – eight forwards, three defensemen and goaltender Peyton Jones.The Heartlanders open the 2023-24 season vs. the Rapid City Rush on Fri., Oct. 20 at 7:05 p.m. Season ticket memberships, mini-plans, partial plans and group tickets are available for the 2023-24 season by visiting iowaheartlanders.com/tickets and by calling 319-569-4625.2023-24 Roster (players signed to ECHL contracts)Forwards (8): Yuki Miura, Tanner MacMaster, Jesse Jacques, Mike Knaub, Davis Koch, Nick Campoli, Alec Broetzman, Odeen TuftoDefensemen (3): Kevin McKernan, Chris Lipe, Nolan OrzeckGoaltenders (1): Peyton JonesHead Coach and General Manager Derek Damon:“Odeen is a highly-touted prospect that has had a lot of success in his first two seasons. We’ll rely on him to play in a lot of situations and be one of our best producers. There’s a lot of things Odeen does that impresses us, including that he’s an offensively-skilled guy that elevates his linemates and our power play. Now that he’s getting into his third year pro, we want to provide him the chance to take that next leap in his career and we’re thrilled he’s coming to the Heartland.”Need to know Tufto’s best offensive season came as a rookie in 2021-22; he posted 31 points (7g) with Orlando in 36 games and appeared in four games with the Crunch.The Chaska, MN native was one of the best point-producing players at the NCAA level over a four-year career at Quinnipiac University (2017-21). As a senior in 2020-21, he led the nation with 39 assists, captained the Bobcats to the NCAA tournament, received numerous distinctions including ECAC Player of the Year and First Team All-ECAC Hockey and was also named a top 10 finalist for the Hobey Baker Award. He posted 39 goals and 168 points in 139 career games at Quinnipiac and led the school in points all four seasons. Following his NCAA hockey career, the 5-foot-7, 175-lb., right-handed shot signed an ATO with Syracuse in Mar. 2021 and then a one-year entry-level contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning for the 2021-22 season. Last summer, Tufto agreed to an AHL contract with Tuscon prior to the start of the 2022-23 campaign. Tufto won the 2013 Class A Minnesota Boy’s High School Hockey Tournament with St. Thomas Academy. Additionally, he won the USHL’s Anderson Cup (best regular season points percentage) in 2017 with Sioux City.