The Tips officially added two new players to their roster today with the announcement of the signing of Mirco Muller and Stathis Soumelidis, the team’s two selections in the recent CHL import draft.
Muller, a defenseman from Switzerland who’s entering his 17-year-old season, was picked 11th overall. He’s the key signing of the two for two reasons: 1) At the time of the draft Tips general manager Garry Davidson was not 100-percent certain Muller would commit to Everett, and 2) He fills an important need. Everett potentially lost its top four d-men from last season, depending on what happens with Ryan Murray. Muller, who’s already played for Switzerland’s U-20 team and came highly recommended, helps fill that void. He’s also billed as a puck mover, which will be particularly needed if Murray isn’t back. Davidson said Muller is the type of player who can step straight into the lineup and play significant minutes.
Muller’s signing means the Tips are overflowing with signed 1995-born defensemen. There’s Austin Adam, who’s coming off a promising rookie season as a 16-year-old. There’s Tye Hand, who began last season with the Tips, though he never got into a game before being reassigned. There’s Griffin Foulk, who signed during the offseason after being a key piece in the Tyler Maxwell trade. And there’s Cole MacDonald, who was the third-highest scoring defenseman at the Telus Cup (Canada’s midget national championship tournament). It’ll be interesting to see how that all settles out.
As for Soumelidis, he’s your typical Czech of Greek heritage who played junior hockey in Finland — you follow all that? The big winger, who will be 18 this season, was Everett’s second-round pick, taken 68th overall. He’s a banger who’s expected to provide a physical presence. His signing was more academic as Davidson said he was committed to coming to North America from the start.
The press release mentions that both Muller and Soumelidis already speak English, so that should help ease their transition. Their addition should help continue Everett’s building process.