Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin has announced that the team has signed center Ryan Poehling to a three-year, entry-level deal. The Canadiens’ 2017 first-round pick, who has played the last three seasons with St. Cloud State University, is expected to join the team immediately.
Poehling will begin his three-year deal this season as the team will burn the first year of his contract, but he will remain exempt from the upcoming Seattle expansion draft as he would need to play in 11 games to earn a pro season towards expansion eligibility. Known for being an offensive catalyst who is exceptional at play-making, the 20-year-old has scored 29 goals and 46 assists in three years at St. Cloud State. While his junior year numbers don’t stand out (eight goals, 31 points in 36 games), Poehling is considered to be a top prospect, who just has struggled this season with his shooting percentage, despite putting up more shots as well as more quality shots on goal this season.
The 6-foot-2, 200-pound forward also saw some international time as he was named the tournament MVP of the 2019 World Junior Championship for Team USA, showing off his offensive prowess. This included leading an impressive third period comeback in a preliminary game against Sweden, when he scored a natural hat trick in the second half of the period to tie the game. In the end, he tallied five goals and eight points in seven games. It was the second time Poehling played in the World Juniors as he also suited up for the 2018 team as well.