Hulking defenseman D.J. King has signed on with the reigning Ontario Hockey League champion Hamilton Bulldogs.
The 6-foot-3, 220-pound King, who has a 2000 birth date, was Hamilton’s second round pick at the 2016 OHL draft. He has spent the past two seasons with the United States National Team Development Program.
King joins a Hamilton team that is rebuilding its blue line following the graduation of several defenders from the 2017-2018 championship squad.
Bulldogs general manager Steve Staios noted the upside that King has.
“He brings leadership, toughness and the ability to transition the puck,” Staios said of King. “There is plenty of upside with this player.”
King is the son of former OHL and National Hockey League left winger Derek King.
The elder King was an OHL scoring star with both the Soo Greyhounds and Oshawa Generals. He scored 35 goals as a rookie with the Greyhounds in 1984-1985 before tallying 53 times for Oshawa in 1986-1987 when the Generals won the OHL championship under coach Paul Theriault.
A Hamilton native, King then went on to play in 830 regular season games in the NHL, scoring 261 goals. He now coaches in the minor pro, American Hockey League.