Joel Rechlicz was born on June 14, 1987 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. After his junior career with the Chicoutimi Sagueneens of the QMJHL, he went undrafted, but was signed by the New York Islanders prior to the 2008-09 season after playing in the reestablished International Hockey League.
Rechlicz is known as "Wrecker" among fans and teammates and his style of play certainly lives up to that name. Appearing in just 17 games for the Islanders in 2008-09, Rechlicz established himself as a bonafide enforcer in the NHL, taking on such tough guys as Georges Laraque and Riley Cote amongst others.
On July 12, 2012, Rechlicz signed as a free agent to a one-year, two-way contract with the Phoenix Coyotes and would spend the majority of the 2012-13 in the AHL with the club's affiliate, the Portland Pirates, befor being traded back to the Washington Capitals on April 2, 2013 in exchange for forward Matt Clackson.