The Florida Panthers have signed Latvian forward Rodrigo Abols to a two-year entry-level contract, Abols played in the SHL full-time this season for Orebro HK, but will finally get an opportunity to join an NHL organization.
Abols will be remembered by Vancouver Canucks fans for attending their development camp even before he was drafted, and showing off his speed and skill before debuting in the WHL for the Portland Winterhawks. The young Latvian would eventually be selected by the Canucks at the very end of the 2016 draft (184th overall) but never did sign with the organization. In fact, after another excellent season in the CHL—including 61 points in 63 games for the Acadie-Bathurst Titan—he was off to Sweden to compete for Orebro.
Now 23, Abols is coming off an impressive 18-goal campaign in the SHL which tied him for fifth in league scoring. The fact that he only contributed eight assists obviously was no matter to the Panthers, who likely took another look at him when he recently suited up for Latvia at the IIHF World Championship. Abols was only eligible for a two-year contract, and will likely compete for a spot in the organization at training camp.