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Walleye re-sign defenseman Blake Hillman

The Blade
The Blade

Defenseman Blake Hillman, who played in 35 games for the Toledo Walleye in 2019-20, is returning to the organization.

Hillman, re-signed with the Walleye on Tuesday. The 25-year-old played in 43 games last season for South Carolina, posting three goals, eight assists, and 12 penalty minutes.

In 2019-20, he split time between Toledo, Grand Rapids, and Stockton. He played in 35 games for the Walleye and produced 13 points (1 G, 12 A) and eight penalty minutes. Hillman also played 12 games at the American Hockey League level, five with the Griffins and seven with the Heat.

Walleye coach Dan Watson called Hillman “a student of the game.”

“He quietly goes about his business on the ice,” Watson said. “He will be counted on for his leadership, his intelligence, and his steady play. We can expect Blake to play against opponents' top lines and anchor our penalty kill.”

Hillman was selected in the sixth round of the 2016 draft by the Chicago Blackhawks out of the University of Denver. He made his professional debut by skating in four games for the Blackhawks at the end of the 2017-18 season. He collected his first pro goal on April 4, 2018, at St. Louis.

Hillman spent the 2018-19 season with Rockford in the AHL, appearing in 54 games with four points (1 G, 3 A) and 20 penalty minutes for the IceHogs.

In his three years at the University of Denver, he skated in 123 games and finished with seven goals, 24 assists, and 84 penalty minutes.

The Walleye open the 2021-22 season at Kalamazoo on Saturday, Oct. 23. The home opener is set for Saturday, Nov. 6.

Single-game tickets are on sale. For more information go to

First Published September 14, 2021, 3:38pm

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