Pack Player Profile: Joe Whitney
Joe Whitney is another recognizable name for Wolf Pack fans. The 29-year-old forward entered the American Hockey League in the 2011-12 season with the Albany Devils and was with the Devils organization for four seasons. Afterwards, he joined the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in the 2015-16 season. That season, Whitney played 36 games before suffering a season ending injury. Last year, in his first full season back from recovery, the forward spent time with the San Antonio Rampage (55 games) and the Tucson Roadrunners (19 games). He recorded a total of 36 points between the two clubs. Joe Whitney is looking forward to getting back to his dominant offensive ways. Before his injury in the 2015-16 season, Whitney averaged between 44 and 60 points per season.
Joe Whitney’s time with the Albany Devils was solid. The forward was an all around offensive player who scored against Hartford multiple times. He was noticeable to Pack fans as he always seemed to put the final nail in the coffin in games or had a multi point performance. He was consistent with his style of play. His first season in the league, Whitney produced 44 points, followed by 51, 53, and then 60 (his personal best) in his final season with the Devils.
The 2015-16 season was most impressive for Pack fans on Joe Whitney as he became Hartford’s worst nightmare, literally. The Pack struggled against Bridgeport throughout the entire season, and Whitney was one of the reasons why. He recorded two hat tricks against Hartford in two separate games, and Hartford was unable to tame the talented offensive forward. In the season series, Joe Whitney was the player to watch out for. Outside of the season series with Hartford, the veteran played well night in and night out. He continued to show strides and had a strong work ethic. After completing 36 games, he recorded 14 goals, 19 assists for 33 points, and was on pace for at least 50 points before his season ending injury.
Last season upon returning from injury, the forward signed with the San Antonio Rampage and was named the team’s captain, but the offense did not come easy for Joe Whitney. He struggled a bit in the early stages and was rusty. He continued to work hard, and the offense began to come back slowly. In 55 games before he was traded, Whitney recorded 11 goals and 17 assists for 28 points. After being traded at the deadline, the Tucson Roadrunners gave Whitney a chance. In 19 outings, he recorded 3 goals, 5 assists for 8 points.
With the upcoming season, Pack fans will be optimistic for Joe Whitney. He can be noticeable on the score sheet and the ice. The question is how well will he perform? Will he regain the consistency he had prior to his injury? Is he fully recovered? These questions will be answered throughout the season. He had more time to develop himself in the off-season, and I’m sure he’s made the adjustments to regain his AHL All-Star status.
If Whitney can perform, this will be a good addition for Hartford. After seasons of him causing trouble for the club, he will now be the “good guy”. The time is now for him to do well, and hopefully be healthy.