With Sunday afternoon’s prospect signing deadline fast approaching, the Habs
got at least one of their signings out of the way on Friday, inking defenceman
Dalton Thrower to a three year, entry-level contract. As always, financial
terms of the deal were not disclosed. Thrower was one of Montreal’s second
round picks in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, selected 51st overall.
After spending the first four years of his junior career with Saskatoon,
Thrower’s rights were dealt to his hometown junior team in Vancouver last
offseason. After failing to crack the Hamilton Bulldogs in training camp,
he joined the Giants and was immediately named team captain.
Although he had a down year with the Blades in 2012-13, Thrower bounced back in his overage year, recording 39 points (12 goals, 27 assists) in just
42 games to go along with 70 PIMS and a +9 rating. Despite missing 30
games, he still finished in the top-30 in the WHL for points by a defenceman and
inside the top-20 for goals.
Thrower last played on January 24th due to an ankle injury. When trying
to rehab it to avoid surgery, he suffered a setback in practice in early March
which ended his season. His absence left a big void to fill for Vancouver;
with Thrower in the lineup they were 21-14-4-3 but without him, just 11-19-3-1.
He recently underwent surgery which likely explains the delay in getting him
signed, management probably wanted to make sure everything went fine before
If you’re keeping track of the newcomers for Hamilton next year, the list is
getting pretty long already. Joining Thrower as a newcomer on the blueline
is Mac Bennett while Charles Hudon, Tim Bozon (if healthy), Daniel Carr, Connor
Crisp, and Jack Nevins are all forwards who will begin their first pro campaigns
Montreal still has a pair of players that need to be signed by June 1st at 5
PM EST to retain their rights. Erik Nystrom, Montreal’s sixth rounder in
2012 (154th overall), has already signed a two year deal with Djurgarden of the
SHL while Brady Vail, picked 94th overall that same year, also is without a
contract. Despite showing some improvement this season with Windsor of the
OHL, speculation is that he won’t be signed. If another team wants Vail,
the Habs can trade him prior to Sunday’s deadline.