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Thunder Lands Young Sniper Latta

January 15, 2018 - ECHL (ECHL) - Wichita Thunder News Release

Wichita, KS - The Wichita Thunder, ECHL affiliate of the NHL's Edmonton Oilers, AHL's Bakersfield Condors and powered by Toyota, are excited to announce the signing of forward Nick Latta to a standard player contract.

Latta, who just turned 24, returns to North America for the first time in three-plus seasons after securing his recent release from historic DEL franchise, Kolner Haie (Cologne Sharks). A native of Peiting, Germany, the 6-foot-1, 194-pound forward appeared in 156 games and recorded 43 points (21g, 22a) to go with 136 penalty minutes. "We're excited to have Nick join us," commented Head Coach Malcolm Cameron. "He has invested a lot in the Thunder to leave a prominent league like the DEL and we look forward to helping him achieve his goals here in North America." He played alongside the likes of former Edmonton Oilers Ryan Jones and Corey Potter.

Latta chose to develop in one of the stronger European leagues before making his way back to North America. The DEL has produced NHL talent such as Christian Ehrhoff and Leon Draisaitl. Originally born in Germany, Latta is a dual citizen. His father, Ken, hails from Thunder Bay, Ontario. He brings quite a hockey pedigree to the Air Capital. Latta's father was drafted in the fourth round of the 1981 NHL Entry Draft (#79 overall) by the Philadelphia Flyers. His uncle, David, was a former first round draft pick of the Quebec Nordiques (#15 overall) in the 1985 NHL Entry Draft and played 10 years of pro hockey in the NHL, AHL, IHL and Germany. Latta played hockey in Germany until the age of 17, when he headed to his dad's province to follow in his footsteps into the Canadian Junior ranks.

He joined the Ontario Hockey League's Sarnia Sting and played there for four seasons. In 2013-14, he was named captain and had a career year, racking up 66 points (38g, 28a) in 65 games. During his junior career, he was selected to represent Team Germany for the World Junior U18 and U20 teams. After finishing his junior career, Latta signed an amateur tryout with the American Hockey League's Hartford Wolfpack to close out the 2013-14 season. He returns to North America looking to advance his career and reach the NHL. Being just 24 years old, he sees this as an opportunity to start showcasing himself again in North America and follow in his family's footsteps.

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