Walleye add veteran presence up front


The Toledo Walleye added instant experience to their roster Tuesday, signing two veteran forwards.

The organization agreed to terms with forwards John Vigilante and Joey Sides.

Vigilante, 28, spent the last three seasons overseas playing in Europe. Sides, 27, played for the Colorado Eagles in the ECHL’s Western Conference last season.

Vigilante, a native of Dearborn, Mich., collected 26 points (nine goals, 17 assists) in 52 games last season while playing with Oskarshamn in Sweden.

Prior to heading to Europe, Vigilante appeared in 290 games during four season American Hockey League seasons in Milwaukee, Syracuse, Quad City, and Grand Rapids. His AHL totals include 48 goals and 80 assists.

Viglante’s last AHL season was 2009-10 with Grand Rapids when the 6-foot, 200-pound forward collected 11 goals and 14 assists in 79 contests.

“John is an experienced, proven producer at many levels,” Walleye coach Nick Vitucci said. “He will bring a consistent veteran presence and scoring to our team.”

Sides, a native of Sun Valley, Idaho, posted 21 goals and 19 assists in 44 contests with Colorado last season. In 2011-12, he appeared in 29 games for the Eagles and collected a point per game (15 goals, 14 assists).

“Joey has a scorer’s touch,” Vitucci said. “The last two years he has proven to be an excellent finisher at our level. Teams will have to game plan to stop his scoring.”

The 27-year-old has also spent part of one year playing overseas and two full seasons in the Central Hockey League.

The forward also appeared in six games last year with St. John’s in the AHL, collecting a pair of assists. In his two years in the CHL with Arizona, the 5-11, 185-pound forward appeared in 123 games with 44 goals and 54 assists.