The Bruins have locked up one of their top prospects, announcing that they have signed forward Ryan Donato to a two-year, entry-level contract. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. It’s worth noting that the first year of the deal is 2017-18 which means that Donato will be eligible to play right away for Boston.
The 21-year-old was a second-round pick of the Bruins (56th overall) back in 2014 and is coming off a very strong junior season at Harvard. In just 29 games, he tallied a career-high 26 goals to go along with 17 assists; his 1.48 point per game average ranked fifth among all Division I players. Because of his performance, he was named one of the ten finalists for the 2018 Hobey Baker Award for the top player in college hockey. However, they weren’t named to the end-of-season tournament and Boston has wasted little time locking him up.
Donato also made his mark at the Olympics last month. He led Team USA in scoring with six points in five games and his five goals tied for the most among all Olympians. With the injuries Boston has up front at the moment (Patrice Bergeron, David Backes, Jake DeBrusk, and Anders Bjork), there’s a good chance that Donato will be playing a regular role in the not-too-distant future.