As was expected, the Detroit Red Wings have signed two-time Hobey Baker finalist Gustav Nyquist to a two-year, entry level contract. Financial terms of the deal have not yet been released, but I’m sure CapGeek will work some sort of voodoo magic to get them by the end of the day.
Nyquist will join the Grand Rapids on their trip to Texas this weekend, and figures to make his pro debut in a Griffins uniform somewhere over the next 48 hours, which is super exciting, I’m sure.
For the second year in a row, Nyquist is one of the ten finalists for the Hobey Baker, college hockey’s equivalent to the Hart Trophy. His University of Maine Black Bears did not earn a berth into the NCAA Tournament, and Nyquist has decided to forgo his senior season to turn pro. He is currently the 4th ranked prospect in the Red Wings system, per Hockey’s Future and 3rd per Red Wings Central.
The official release, per the Detroit Red Wings, and courtesy of public relations coordinator Rick Bowness:
Detroit, MI… Detroit Red Wings General Manager Ken Holland today announced that 21-year-old forward Gustav Nyquist has been signed to a two-year entry-level contract. As per club policy, no further terms of the deal will be announced. Nyquist will join the Grand Rapids Griffins (AHL) immediately.
Originally selected by Detroit in the fourth round (121st overall) of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, Nyquist has spent the past three seasons with the University of Maine Black Bears (NCAA) where he has twice been named a Hockey East First Team All-Star. The 5’11”, 170 lb. center was also named to the conference’s All-Rookie Team in 2008-09 after a stellar freshman campaign with the Black Bears. Nyquist has been a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award as the top collegiate player in the country each of the past two seasons (this year’s winner will be announced on April 8). In 113 career NCAA games, Nyquist has tallied 144 points (50G-94A) in addition to 68 penalty minutes.
Prior to enrolling at the University of Maine, Nyquist starred with his hometown Malmö Redhawks in Sweden’s premier junior league (SuperElit) where he registered 75 points (32G-43A) in 66 games played over the course of two seasons.
And from the Grand Rapids Griffins:
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Grand Rapids Griffins on Friday signed forward Gustav Nyquist(GUHS-tav NEW-kwihst) to an amateur tryout.
The 21-year-old Nyquist, the Detroit Red Wings’ third choice (121st overall) in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, was recently named a Hobey Baker Award top-10 finalist for the second straight year following his junior season at the University of Maine.
Born in Halmstad, Sweden, Nyquist led the Black Bears and tied for second in Hockey East and seventh nationally with 51 points (18-33—51) in 36 games. Maine’s assistant captain was named to the Hockey East First Team for the second year in a row, as he became the first player since Steve Kariya (1996-99) to lead the Black Bears in scoring for three consecutive seasons.
In 2009-10, Nyquist was named to the Hobey Baker Hat Trick as one of the top three players in college hockey and chosen as a First Team All-American. He led the nation in scoring with 61 points (19-42—61) in 39 games while tying for first with 42 assists.
A Hockey East All-Rookie Team selection in 2008-09, Nyquist became the first freshman to lead Maine in scoring since Paul Kariya (1992-93), as he paced the team with 13 goals, 19 assists and 32 points.
Nyquist, an economics major, was nominated this season for the Dean Smith Award as Maine’s top-scholar athlete, and he has twice been named a Maine Scholar-Athlete Award winner and to the Hockey East Academic Honor Roll.
Nyquist becomes the third Hobey Baker finalist on Grand Rapids’ current roster, joining goalie David Brown (2007 Notre Dame) and defenseman Brendan Smith (2010 Wisconsin). He will be available to make his pro debut tonight when the Griffins visit the Texas Stars at 8:30 p.m. EDT.
Super psyched to see this happen. I hope he finishes his education in the offseason, ala Adbelkader as I’m sure we all agree you have to have a plan outside hockey, but it was for sure time to get him in the minors and prepare him for the big leagues.