Aaron Atwell retires, remains with Hat Tricks in new role

by Jim Cerny

DANBURY, CT -- The Danbury Hat Tricks of the Federal Prospects Hockey League announced that Aaron Atwell has been hired to work in the hockey operations department.  The former defenseman will be the Hat Tricks video coach and a regional scout based in Ontario.

Atwell announced his retirement as a professional hockey player on Sept. 6. The 32-year-old played eight seasons, including three in Danbury. His 40 assists in 65 games are fourth all-time in Hat Tricks history and he helped lead the Danbury Titans to the regular-season FHL championship in 2015-16.

“We are happy for Aaron as he moves on to the next chapter of his career and that he will remain a part of the Hat Tricks organization,” Danbury coach and general manager Billy McCreary said. “He has put a tremendous amount of passion into his craft and I know he will provide the same level of professionalism in his future endeavors.

“His contributions on the ice, in the locker room and most importantly in our community will be missed. That said, we are excited to see what the future holds for No. 77.”

A native of Toronto, Atwell had 22 points (all assists) in 39 games last season with the Hat Tricks. He led Danbury defensemen with a +12 plus/minus rating and was second in scoring at the position behind Johnny Macdonald, who had 24 points. He had three points (one goal, two assists) in five Commissioner’s Cup Playoff games to lead Hat Tricks defensemen.

Atwell also assisted the coaching staff last season, working behind the bench and with video when injured in January and February.

“I’m really excited to still be involved with the Hat Tricks because Danbury is home for me,” Atwell said. “I have so many great memories there on and off the ice and am looking forward to this new opportunity.”

In the Hat Tricks inaugural season of 2019-20, Atwell led the team’s defensemen with 21 points (three goals, 18 assists) in 26 games after being acquired from Danville. With the Titans in 2015-16, Atwell had 18 points (four goals, 14 assists) in 40 games.

Atwell finished his career with 121 points (18 goals, 103 assists) and 283 penalty minutes in 238 FPHL/FHL games with Danbury, Danville, Port Huron and Watertown. He also played 28 games in the SPHL with Fayettville and Peoria and 17 games in Sweden.