Providence College Junior Kasper Björkqvist has signed a two-year entry-level contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins, forgoing his eligibility for his final collegiate season with the Friars next year.
Originally selected in the 2nd round of the 2016 NHL Draft (61st overall) by the Penguins, Björkqvist ended up playing 112 career games over his collegiate career in Providence. Over that time, he totaled 36 goals and 26 assists.
Last season, the Junior forward set career-highs in goals (17), assists (13), and points (30) while serving as one of the three Captains of the hockey team. The Friars were able to make the NCAA Tournament in each of Kasper’s three years with the team and managed to advance to the Frozen Four in his Junior campaign.
Kasper Bjorkqvist on how the #Pens have supported his development at Providence College: “It’s hard to listen to too many guys telling you. I have three great coaches who talk to the Penguins, and they think of what they can help me with.” pic.twitter.com/wyzWDPOguf
— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) June 27, 2018
— NHL (@NHL) July 26, 2018
Penguins Assistant General Manager, Bill Guerin, has had nothing but glowing things to say about the development of the young guy so far and about his time in Friartown.
“Kasper was able to produce in big games throughout his college career, and he was fortunate to play in a lot of them. Playing for an outstanding program in Providence allowed him to go far in the NCAA Tournament each season, so he received a lot of great experience.”
I’m starting to lose track of all the NHL teams I’m going to have to keep an eye on with all of these Friars turning pro. Björkqvist is the fourth player from last year’s squad to sign an NHL entry-level contract joining Brandon Duhaime (Minnesota Wild), Josh Wilkins (Nashville Predators), and Jacob Bryson (Buffalo Sabres). With Noel Acciari currently mixing it up for the Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup Finals, I’m going to have my work cut out for me following these studs around the league. It’s a good problem to have as a Friar fan.
Best of luck to Kasper on his quest in the NHL!