Zoltan Hetenyi signs with Admirals

6169908409_5f1fb12b05_nThe Milwaukee Admirals announced Friday afternoon that they signed defenseman Jeff Foss and goalie Zoltan Hetenyi to American Hockey League contracts. Here is the press release sent out by the Milwaukee Admirals…

Milwaukee, WI—
The Milwaukee Admirals announced today that they have signed defenseman Jeff Foss and goaltender Zoltán Hetényi to American Hockey League contracts.

Foss returns to Milwaukee for his second professional season after splitting the 2010-11 campaign between the Admirals  and Cincinnati Cyclones of the ECHL. Last year the Moorhead, MN native posted an assist and 32 penalty minutes in 28 games with the Ads and also skated in a pair of playoff contests. A 2011 R.P.I. graduate, Foss skated in 11 games with the Cyclones, recording an assist, four penalty minutes and +5 rating.

Hetényi, a native of Budapest, Hungary, will make his North American professional debut his year. He began last season with Jokerit of SM-ligga in Finland where he notched a 1.75 goals against average and a .936 save percentage in seven games before being loaned to Kiekko-Vantaa where he tallied a 3.04 GAA with a .912 save percentage in 11 contests. The 24-year old netminder (2/18/1988), has represented his native country many times in international competition and helped Hungary qualify for the top division of the 2009 World Championships, their first appearance there in 70 years.

Read more about Zoltan Hetenyi after the jump.

Coming into development camp in late June, Zoltan Hetenyi was an un-signed goalie playing in the SM-ligga in Helsinki, Finland for Jokerit. There in Finland, he was a fan favorite to the fans of Jokerit. As one can see on his Facebook page here, fans are all congratulating him on his new AHL contract, but will miss him.

Here is a few quotes from Jokerit fans:

“Good Luck On AHL! Ria Ria Hungaria!!”

– Tero L.

“Good luck to AHL! We will miss you :/ but remember, you’re allways welcome to come back in Jokerit!”

– Otto I.

“Good luck to America and thank you for everything! You can always come back to Helsinki and Jokerit. 🙂 Ria! Ria! Hungaria!”

– Joni T.

The list and posts from his fans just go on, and on. As all Jokerit fans say to Hetenyi, “Ria! Ria! Ria! Hungaria”, which means, ” This chant should continue if Hetenyi plays for the Nashville Predators.

Looking at Hetenyi at development camp in late June, he was the best goalie on the ice of him, Magnus Hellberg and Marek Mazanec. Also, Hetenyi was the most in-shape. His skating ability is off-the-chain. For a goalie, all one needs is to be a great skater (and of course to stop the puck).

One thing that was impressive was that there seemed to be no language barrier between goalie coach, Mitch Korn. Korn was using Hetenyi to demonstrate the skating drills to Hellberg and Mazanec, which says a lot in terms of skill.

Now, the Milwaukee Admirals have quite an interesting goalie situation. The Admirals have newly signed goalies, Jeremy Smith, Magnus Hellberg and Zoltan Hetenyi. The best of those three, which by the end of the season could be either Hetenyi or Hellberg, will be starting the starting goalie. Right now, Smith is the starter, but that could very well change. However, expect Hetenyi to play in Cincinnati, the ECHL affiliate, for a while to start the season. My eyes will be on Milwaukee very much of this upcoming season.

David Poile, general manager of the Nashville Predators, got a steal here in having the rights of Hetenyi. This goalie will shock many people with his work ethic and in the next couple of seasons, look out for this guy because he could be big!

Want to take a look at his play? Check out his video and some interviews here.

Here is a highlight video: