Getting to know: Chris Joyaux
Genting Casino Coventry Blaze Head Coach Danny Stewart has added a fourth import to his defence for the 2018/19 Elite League season in the form of 6’1” 200lbs American Chris Joyaux.
The quick skating blue-liner, born in Bloomingdale, Illinois, is one of three hockey playing brothers and will be making his first trip across the pond to ply his trade.
With a much sought after big right shot, his early-career began in Junior A, being drafted by the Tri City Storm of the USHL in 2010.
Following just nine appearances, he was traded to Des Moines Buccaneers, where once again his stay would be short lived, icing 13 times before moving on to the Chicago Steel, a team a bit closer to his family home in Illinois. Joyaux would finish the season with 24 games for the Steel scoring 2 goals and assisting on another.
The 2011/12 season saw the new Blaze man enjoy a more settled season playing 55 games exclusively with the Steel scoring 5 goals with 15 assists.
Post junior, to begin the 2012/13 season, Joyaux, elected for the NCAA and University of Miami (Ohio). Pulling on Redhawks colours in his freshman year, alongside a roster packed with a host of future NHLers, Miami would go on to be crowned regular season champions. Ultimately though, they were unable to convert this success into the post-season, falling in the quarter-finals. Chris had a solid first season in the red and white, icing in 41 games with 4 assists and was +10.
The following year, Redhawks sadly missed the post-season but for Joyaux it would be an interesting year. Scoring his first collegiate goal, he finished with 1 goal, 4 assists and would team up with one of his two brothers, Matthew, who joined Miami (Ohio) as a freshman.
The brothers would again link up for a far more successful 2014/15 season. The Redhawks being crowned NCHC champions with the older Joyaux registering 6 assists from 38 appearances.
In Chris’s senior year, the 2015/16 campaign, although the Redhawks were unable to build on their success of the previous season, Joyaux would enjoy a personal best of 4 goals and 2 assists in 34 appearances before attracting the interest and joining the St. Johns IceCaps on an ATO (amateur try out) in the AHL, an opportunity he spoke about here:
For his first full professional season (2016/17), Joyaux would not stay in St. John, but inked a deal 2000 miles away joining the Tulsa Oilers of the ECHL. That season, Chris would link up with now Blaze teammate Danick Paquette, and former Coventry forward Garett Ladd, enjoying a solid rookie year scoring 1 goal and 14 assists and being +7.
Ahead of the most recent past season, Joyaux was to take part in the Chicago Wolves AHL training camp, afterwards though returning to Oklahoma for a second professional season with Tulsa where he was asked to sew an A on his chest. Joyaux scored 3 goals with 10 assists and was +5.
He'll now join up with Coventry for his first taste of Europe, and excitingly for the 26-year-old, he'll also be taking up a masters opportunity at the Coventry University Business School.
On the player we'll see in Coventry, John Peterson, Vice President of Communications and Play-by-Play Broadcaster of the Tulsa Oilers said: "You'll love Chris over there. He's a hard-working player who's not afraid to do whatever it takes to get the job done. Stand up person off the ice as well. Very good interacting with the fans, hilarious personality and a good leader on the ice."