The Chicago Blackhawks will be adding another interesting defensive prospect to their organization, as Mark Lazerus of The Athletic (subscription required) reports that they will sign Wyatt Kalynuk to an entry-level contract. Originally drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers, Kalynuk became an unrestricted free agent last month after failing to reach an agreement with the team in their exclusive negotiating window. The 23-year old had informed the team that he would not be returning for his senior season at the University of Wisconsin and instead will end up turning pro with the Blackhawks instead.
Kalynuk, a seventh-round pick in 2017, has put up consistent offensive numbers at Wisconsin over his three years of collegiate hockey and now joins a Blackhawks pipeline brimming with defensive prospects. Chicago had already convinced Ian Mitchell earlier this spring to forgo his senior season, signing him to his own entry-level contract.
While Mitchell’s deal will be for three seasons, Kalynuk will be signing just a two-year pact given his age. With reports recently emerging that players can burn the first year of entry-level contracts this summer and no further clarification coming from Lazerus, it is not clear exactly when Wyatt’s will kick in.
The smooth-skating defenseman could potentially be an option for the Blackhawks as soon as 2020-21 given his age and experience, but will not be eligible to play this summer in Chicago’s playoff run.