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Former K-Wing Curtis Valk makes NHL debut with Florida Panthers

Former K-Wing Curtis Valk makes NHL debut with Florida Panthers


KALAMAZOO, MI—Former Kalamazoo Wings forward Curtis Valk became the 632nd player in ECHL history to reach the National Hockey League when he debuted with the Florida Panthers on Tuesday night against the Dallas Stars.

Valk, 24, appeared in parts of two seasons with the Wings from 2014-16, and produced 63 points (27 goals, 36 assists) in 61 games.

Since making his pro debut in 2014, Valk has skated in 165 career games, including 104 with Utica and Springfield of the American Hockey League. Over that time, the centerman has notched 51 career goals and 79 career assists, totaling 130 points.

Most recently, while with the Springfield Thunderbirds, Valk scored six goals and added nine assists in 16 games played. At the time of his recall to the Florida Panthers, he ranked in a tie for fifth overall on AHL scoring.

Valk’s accolades at the ECHL level included being named as Kalamazoo’s representative at the 2015 ECHL All-Star Classic in Orlando and earning the league’s Player of the Month honors in October, 2014.

Before turning pro, the 5-foot-9 center played four seasons with the Medicine Hat Tigers (WHL), and was able to produce at a tremendous level. In 270 career games in the WHL, Valk registered 125 goals and 130 assists. 183 of his 255 career junior points came during his last two seasons in Medicine Hat, in which he earned 91 and 92 points, respectively.

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Posted: 11/14/2017 7:44:00 PM

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