NAHL alum Abruzzese signs NHL contract with Maple Leafs
The Toronto Maple Leafs announced that the hockey club has signed forward and NAHL alum Nicholas Abruzzese to a two-year, entry-level contract for the 2021-22 and 2022-23 seasons. The average annual value of the contract is $850,000.
Abruzzese made his NHL debut on April 2nd against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Abruzzese, 22, has posted 33 points (9G, 24A) in 28 games with Harvard University (NCAA) during the 2021-22 season. The Slate Hill, NY product served as captain this season where he ranked second on the team in points and helped the club to the NCAA Regional Semifinal.
Abruzzese was named to the 2021-22 NCAA ECAC First All-Star Team. During the 2019-20 season, Abruzzese led NCAA rookies in scoring with 44 points (14 goals, 30 assists) in 31 games with Harvard. He was named ECAC Hockey Rookie of the Year that season and earned a First-Team All-ECAC Hockey and All-Rookie Team selection. Abruzzese has collected 77 points (23G, 54A) through 59 career NCAA games with Harvard.
"As an organization, we're very thankful to Harvard head coach Ted Donato and his staff for their job developing Nick," said Maple Leafs General Manager Kyle Dubas. "Harvard's academic reputation precedes itself but is also an elite hockey development program as evidenced by the number of players they have developed into National Hockey League players."
Internationally, Abruzzese represented the USA at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games where he recorded four points (1G, 3A) in four games.
Abruzzese was selected by Toronto in the fourth round (124th overall) of the 2019 NHL Draft.
Abruzzese played in the NAHL during the 2016-17 season for the New Jersey Titans. He appeared in four games, which included scoring a goal in his NAHL debut on November 12, 2016 in a 5-2 win over the Northeast Generals.