Tim Murray didn’t waste any time, signing the Sabres first round pick (8th overall) at the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, forward Alexander Nylander, to a three-year, entry-level contract. Nylander will make the entry-level maximum of $925,000 per season in salary, with $850,000 in bonus opportunities.
“We are extremely pleased to sign Alex to his entry-level deal. When we selected Alex, we obviously knew he was a talented, skilled player. We look forward to him coming to training camp and competing for a job.” – General Manager Tim Murray
Nylander dazzled many with his stickhandling and penalty shot goals in his first Sabres development camp.
“Obviously he’s got some sweet moves and some sweet hands, and that’s when you certainly notice them, is when he got to go on penalty shots. That’s the type of player he is. He’s skilled, he sees the ice and can make plays.” –Rochester Americans coach Dan Lambert
Nylander is the first of Buffalo’s 10 picks last month to sign his entry-level deal. He is the sixth player in the top 10 of the draft to sign, joining No. 2 Patrik Laine (Winnipeg), No. 3 Pierre-Luc Dubois (Columbus), No. 4 Jesse Puljujarvi (Edmonton), No. 6 Matthew Tkachuk (Calgary), and No. 9 Mikhail Sergachev (Montreal).
Remaining unsigned are No. 1 Auston Matthews (Toronto), No. 5 Olli Juolevi (Vancouver), No. 7 Clayton Keller (Arizona) and No. 10 Tyson Jost (Colorado).
Nylander led all Mississauga Steelhead (OHL) skaters in goals (28), assists (47) and points (75) in 2015-16 and added a team-high 12 points (6+6) in six playoff games. The 75-point output, which also led all OHL rookies, earned Nylander both OHL and CHL Rookie of the Year honors.
The Stockholm, Sweden native represented Sweden in two different tournaments last season and posted more than a point per game in both. He led Sweden’s 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship team with nine points (4+5) in seven games and earned a silver medal while leading Sweden with 11 points (3+8) in seven games during the 2016 IIHF Under-18 World Championship.