Kellen Briggs, one of the original members of the inaugural 2008-09 Reign squad, is returning to Ontario.
Briggs spent all of 2009-10 in Germany with the Dresdner Eislöwen of the second-tier Bundesliga. He went 23-22-0 with five shutouts and a 2.81 goals-against average in 46 games.
As a rookie with the ECHL’s Idaho Steelheads in 2007-08, Briggs went 17-11-2 with a 2.36 goals-against average and was named to the National Conference All-Star team. He signed with the Reign the following summer but was quickly shelved by a serious groin injury, which he suffered in the team’s second preseason game.
Briggs didn’t make his Reign debut until January 2009, but proceeded to go 7-5 with a .927 save percentage and 2.43 goals-against average. His save percentage and goals-against average – albeit over just 12 games – are still the lowest by a Reign goalie in a single season.
Briggs’ time in the ECHL ended with a call-up to the American Hockey League’s Portland Pirates in February 2009. Briggs went 3-3 with a .903 save percentage and 2.85 goals-against average for Portland.
I spoke briefly with Briggs by phone this afternoon; he was driving to his family’s home in Colorado and said that he was “excited to be back.” Expect a longer interview in this space sometime Monday.
With Briggs in the picture, it will be interesting to see who ends up sharing the goaltending duties. The Reign have already signed free agent Garrett Zemlak for the upcoming season, and could still receive Kings prospect Martin Jones.