Duluth, GA - As the season rapidly approaches, the Atlanta Gladiators are putting the finishing touches on their final roster, adding a forward and defenseman today. They signed defenseman Rob Powers, who spent parts of the last two seasons in the ECHL with three teams, as well as forward Dante Hannoun who will be making his professional debut this season.
“Rob Powers is a defenseman that was in Indianapolis. He skates well and has a great shot. He plays a solid two-way game and plays hard. Rob had a solid first season and I think he will be more comfortable after being in the league last year. As a coach I'm looking forward to seeing him develop,” said Coach Jeff Pyle.
Powers, a 25-years-old left-handed defenseman, hails from Ajax, Ontario. Rob brings a championship pedigree from early on in his career, winning two OJHL Championships, in 2011-12 and 2013-14. He then went on to play defense for Robert Morris University (PA) and was part of the Colonials winning two regular-season titles, as they won the Atlantic Conference Championship in his freshman and sophomore seasons.
During college he played stellar defense, registering 50 career blocked shots in 84 games. After his senior year, he went straight to professional hockey, playing in the ECHL that same year. Powers first played with the Gladiators' biggest rival, the Greenville Swamp Rabbits at the end of the 2017-18 season for eight games. Last season, he returned to the ECHL splitting time between the Indy Fuel and Worcester Railers.
“After their finish last season, I'm excited to join the Glads. Everyone I talked to had nothing but good things to say about the team, the organization, and Coach Pyle. Can't wait to get camp started and carry that momentum into this season,” said the new defenseman Powers. Right-handed forward Dante Hannoun is a 21-year-old from Delta, British Columbia, who comes with a decorated resume. Dante is a big-time goal scorer and a clutch player who also brings championship-caliber play.
“Dante Hannoun is a small player but uses that to his advantage. He played in the WHL and led his team on a great post-season run. He is a very smart centerman with great vision and feel for the game, who also competes hard. He is a scorer and player that the puck seems to find. Dante has good hands, skates well and will be a great addition down the middle,” said the Gladiators Head Coach.
Dante has been a natural scorer since bantam hockey. While playing in the PCBHL during the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons, in 123 games he scored a combined 107 goals, 134 assists, and 241 points. In his second season, he put up huge numbers that included 63 goals, in 63 games, with 88 assists for 151 points.
The following year in 2013-14, he spent most of the season with the Greater Vancouver Canadians in the BCMML, also winning a silver medal in the Western Canada Challenge Cup. Toward the end of the season, he joined the Victoria Royals for a couple of games, where he would spend the next five seasons. During his time with the Royals, he put in 98 goals and had 150 assists for 248 points in 284 games.
Last season, he began with the Victoria Royals, then went on to play for the Prince Albert Raiders, playing exactly 28 games for both teams and in 56 games had combined 67 points, with 29 goals and 38 assists. That was the least of what Hannoun did for his new squad. Dante helped Prince Albert win their first Memorial Cup, making them WHL Champions for the first time since 1985. He was not only the leading goal scorer in the playoffs with 14 but added 10 assists for 24 points in 23 playoff games. Hannoun also scored the biggest goal of the year, putting in the overtime winner in Game 7 of the championship series, to give Price Albert their second title in franchise history.
The Atlanta Gladiators open the 2019-20 season home schedule on October 18th and 19th at the Infinite Energy Arena. Fans can purchase tickets by visiting www.atlantagladiators.com or by calling the front office at (770) 497-5100.
The Atlanta Gladiators are members of the ECHL, the nation’s premier "AA" hockey league and are the affiliate of the Eastern Conference Champion Boston Bruins. All home games are played at the 9,119-seat Infinite Energy Arena, located just off I-85 on Sugarloaf Parkway in Duluth, Georgia. The Gladiators have established an unrivaled commitment to excellence, maintaining a distinctive reputation for providing fun, friendly, family, affordable entertainment and are consistently ranked as one of the best "Things to Do" in the Atlanta Metro area and across the North Georgia region.