Entry-level contracts continue to be given out, but this time it is not a drafted prospect that has signed, but an Olympic athlete. Vincent Praplan has signed an entry-level contract with the San Jose Sharks, not long after finishing his stint with the Swiss national team at the Olympics. Praplan attended training camp with the Sharks in 2017, but has played this season in the Swiss NLA.
The 23-year old forward has no doubt been on the radar of NHL teams for several years, dating back to his single season in the OHL with the Brampton Battalion. As a 19-year old, Praplan recorded 53 points in 61 games in that lone season before returning to the NLA full-time for the last four years. This season brought 38 points in 45 games, and continued development of his defensive game.
San Jose Sharks GM Doug Wilson had this to say about Praplan in the team release:
Vincent is a highly skilled playmaker who can play any forward position. We saw first-hand at our rookie tournament last summer what he can do with the puck and think he will fit perfectly within our puck pressure system. His speed allows him to be a threat on the penalty kill, and his offensive instincts make him an asset on the power play. We’re excited for him to join our organization.
Now listed at 6’1″ 195-lbs according to the Sharks, Praplan was the most dangerous Swiss forward at last year’s World Championships, where he recorded seven points in eight games. He has plenty of international experience, and is a worthwhile gamble for the Sharks.
It seems likely that his contract will begin next season, though no official word has been released so far.