The Vegas Golden Knights have convinced top college prospect Jack Dugan to join the organization, though it’s not clear exactly when he will sign on the dotted line. The forward recently finished his sophomore season at Providence College where he was named a Hobey Baker top-ten finalist, and will likely be following the precedent set by fellow collegiate star Scott Perunovich. The Golden Knights have not announced a contract, likely meaning Dugan will start his deal with the 2019-20 season should it resume, or 2020-21 if this year is canceled entirely.
Vegas GM Kelly McCrimmon was obviously excited about bringing Dugan aboard:
We are pleased to have the opportunity to continue to play a key role in the development of Jack Dugan as both a hockey player and as a young man within our organization. Jack took significant steps in his growth over the past two seasons as one of the best all-around players in college hockey, and has proven that he is ready for the next challenge in his young career.
Dugan, 22, led the entire NCAA in scoring this season with 52 points in 34 games but didn’t end up as a Hat Trick finalist for the Hobey Baker–which Perunovich eventually won. Many believed his omission was a mistake given how dominant he was offensively, but he won’t get a chance to avenge that snub with a junior or senior campaign.
Drafted in the fifth round back in 2017, there’s little more that Dugan could have accomplished over the last three years. He first went to the USHL and finished third in league scoring (while recording over 100 penalty minutes) before stepping right into the college ranks as a playmaking dynamo. The 6’2″ winger has gotten stronger and stronger since his draft year and now is a legitimate power forward who looks ready for the grind of professional hockey while still possessing his strong skating ability and puck skills.
While there may not be a first-line ceiling on Dugan, this is a player that looks ready to contribute to the Golden Knights NHL squad right away. If the 2019-20 season resumes with the playoffs, you could see him in the lineup on opening night.