Despite putting up 11 points in nine games for the Chicago Wolves of the AHL last season, Carolina Hurricanes forward Seth Jarvis was not eligible to return to the minor leagues this time around. He’s still just 19, and given he didn’t cross the 20-game threshold to secure a one-time AHL exemption like some other prospects, if he failed to make the Hurricanes he would have to return to the Portland Winterhawks of the WHL.
At the end of training camp, the team did not send Jarvis back, but also didn’t put him in the NHL lineup. The Hurricanes have played in seven games (and won them all); Jarvis has played in none.
That will change this afternoon when the young forward enters the lineup for his NHL debut. After Nino Niederreiter suffered a lower-body injury on Friday night, the Hurricanes have confirmed that Jarvis comes in against the Arizona Coyotes. Niederreiter is expected to be out a few weeks with the ankle injury, a big blow for a player that was off to a nice start to the season. With three goals already, the 29-year-old was well on his way to another 20-goal campaign, a level he returned to in 2020-21 after a disappointing performance the year prior.
Selected 13th overall in 2020, Jarvis has already shown he can dominate the junior ranks and has little to prove with the Winterhawks. He even showed he could be an electric presence at the AHL level with seven goals in nine games last season, and was a highlight reel every night in the preseason. Whether that huge offensive upside lends itself to real NHL action right away remains to be seen, but he’ll get a chance this afternoon.
Of note, like with any prospect his age, is that Jarvis’ entry-level contract will not kick in until he plays in ten games this season. Should he hit that threshold, the first year will be burned and he will become a restricted free agent in 2024. If he plays fewer, that RFA summer would become 2025.