The New Jersey Devils have finally locked in their first overall pick from the 2017 NHL Entry Draft on Saturday when they signed forward Nico Hischier to a three-year deal.
Nico Hischier Signs Entry-Level Deal with New Jersey Devils
The Devils locked Hischier in for the next three years to a standard entry level contract worth $11.325 million, this deal works out to $3.775 million per season, a $925,000 cap hit excluding bonuses. The Devils have stated that they will have a spot for him in camp and will go from there, so the chances of him playing in the NHL this season are in his hands come fall. The 18-year-old center/winger is coming off his first year in North America where he scored 38 goals and added 48 assists for 86 points in 57 games for the Halifax Mooseheads in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
Before that Hischier played at home in Switzerland for Bern of the Swiss Elite League scoring just a single goal in 15 games, during that 2015-16 season he also played for the Bern U-20 team where he put up 28 points in 18 games. He also has quite the list of accomplishments, in 2013-14 he won the U-17 Novizen Championship and did so again in 2014-15. In 2015-16 he won the U-20 Elite Jr. A Championship as well as being one of the top three players in the U-18 World Junior Championships for his team.
But in 2016-17, he broke out huge in the QMJHL. He was a part of the QMJHL All-Rookie Team, the Best Professional Prospect (Mike Bossy Trophy), had the most assists by a rookie, most goals by a rookie and most points by a rookie in the QMJHL which meant he went on to win the Michel Bergeron Trophy for Offensive Rookie of the Year. Hischier also stood out again at the World Junior Championships when he was awarded the Top Three Player Award for both the U-18 and U-20 tournaments.
It’s evident New Jersey has been blessed with one solid talent, and the moment of truth on his NHL days starting this year will come in training camp.