WHEELING, W.Va. - The Wheeling Nailers, ECHL affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins, announced their first player signing of the 2023 offseason. Wheeling has re-signed forward Peter Laviolette III for the 2023-24 season.Laviolette, 25, played his first professional season with the Nailers in 2022-23, and the Wheeling, West Virginia native hit things off immediately with the fans. He won the Project BEST Community Award, as he led the team with 12 community appearances. On the ice, Laviolette contributed 11 points (5g-6a), while playing a physical style, which led to him finishing second on the club with 96 penalty minutes in 38 games.
Prior to turning pro, Laviolette played five years of college hockey at Plymouth State University, where he majored in Sport Management/Business Administration. During his time with the Panthers, Laviolette accumulated 67 points (35g-32a) in 105 games. His best collegiate season came in 2021-22, when he finished third on the team in scoring with nearly one point per game (26 points in 27 games). Plymouth State won the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference Tournament three times and the regular season championship four times with him on the squad.
Laviolette III is one of three Wheeling natives to ever play for the Nailers, and he is the son of former Nailers Head Coach and Wheeling Hockey Hall of Famer Peter Laviolette Jr., who was recently named head coach of the NHL's New York Rangers.