Toledo Walleye add forwards Marcus Vela, Nolan LaPorte

Forwards Marcus Vela and Nolan LaPorte have agreed to terms with the Toledo Walleye for the 2020-21 season.
Vela, 23, re-signs with Toledo after playing 49 games for the Fish during the 2019-20 season.  Vela was assigned to Toledo by the Grand Rapid Griffins late last October after being acquired from the San Jose Barracuda in exchange for defenseman Marcus Crawford. 
Toledo coach Dan Watson said, “Marcus was bright spot and somewhat of a surprise for us last season.  He is very versatile and can play in any situation.  He plays a responsible, 200-foot game and brings quality leadership attributes to the table.”
In his first professional season, the 6-foot-1, 205 pound forward scored 12 goals and 13 assists for 25 points with the Walleye.  He also skated in three games with the ECHL’s Orlando Solar Bears, recording one assist and six penalty minutes.
A seventh-round selection, 190th overall, by the San Jose Sharks in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, Vela made his pro debut with the Barracuda at the end of the 2018-19 campaign and contributed two assists in six appearances.
Before turning pro, the Burnaby, British Columbia, native, had a four-year career at the University of New Hampshire where he amassed 58 points (24G, 34A) and 112 penalty minutes in 135 games from 2015-2019.
LaPorte, 28, spent last season overseas racking up a 39-points (16G, 23A) in 47 games for the Glasgow Clan in the Elite Hockey League.
"Nolan will bring a wealth of experience to our group," said Watson.  "He is very versatile and can play in all situations for us.  I think the fans will enjoy his style of play, as he brings a relentless work ethic and high compete level each and every game."
The Chicago native played his first professional season with Quad City in 2016, and also appeared in one game that season for the American Hockey League's Iowa Wild.  After a year with the Florida Everblades, the 6-foot, 192 pound forward, signed with Atlanta (2018-19) where he set two career-highs- goals (19) and penalty minutes (107).
A former captain for the NCAA's Western Michigan University, LaPorte skated in 133 games tallying 33 goals and 37 assists for 70 points and 176 penalty minutes.  As a Bronco, he skated two seasons with Toledo's Shane Berschbach (2012-2014).   

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