Marksmen make the season’s first move, re-acquire rights to Cook

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C.- The Fayetteville Marksmen, proud members of the Southern Professional Hockey League, announced a trade Friday morning that will secure the rights to forward and former team captain Max Cook.


The Macon Mayhem will surrender the rights to Cook in exchange for the rights to long-time Mayhem winger Stathis Soumelidis.

“Any time you have the ability to get the rights to Max Cook back it’s a good day,” said head coach Cory Melkert.


Cook logged 13 games with Macon in a COVID-shortened 2020-21 season, scoring 5 goals and notching 6 assists. In 2019-20, Cook rolled to a career-high 53 points (15g, 38a) in 45 games with Fayetteville.


“Max is not only a great, veteran hockey player, but one of the faces of our team and a great leader in our locker room,” said owner Chuck Norris. “We wanted to have insurance that if Max Cook plays in the SPHL this season, he’ll do so as a Marksmen.”


Cook has played more games in a Marksmen uniform than any other player in team history and sits 13th in all-time games played in franchise history dating back to 2002.


“Max is a huge part of our hockey team both on and off the ice and has been instrumental in building our culture,” continued Melkert, “He has the ability to be one of the top players in the SPHL and we’re hoping to have him back in our locker room this season.”


Soumelidis’s rights will return to Macon where he has played his entire SPHL career, outside of nine games played with the Marksmen in the 2019-20 season. The hard-nosed winger is poised to eclipse 200 SPHL games played this season and has 115 career points since breaking into the league in 2016.


With the acquisition of Cook’s rights, Fayetteville has protected or re-acquired the rights to seven of the top 11 scorers from the 2019-20 team that ended the year tied at the top of the SPHL.



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The Fayetteville Marksmen are veteran owned and operated by Union Pro Hockey Group and play their home games at Crown Coliseum. The Marksmen are a committed community asset, designed to provide premium entertainment to families and individuals in Cumberland County and surrounding areas.