Arizona Coyotes ink forward Nathan Smith to 2-year entry-level contract

Apr 11, 2022, 4:06 PM
Nathan Smith signs his contract at Gila River Arena on April 11, 2022 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo ...
Nathan Smith signs his contract at Gila River Arena on April 11, 2022 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Kelsey Grant/Arizona Coyotes)
(Photo by Kelsey Grant/Arizona Coyotes)

The Arizona Coyotes on Monday announced the signing of forward Nathan Smith to a two-year entry-level contract.

Smith was acquired by the Coyotes from the Jets on March 21 after being drafted by Winnipeg in the third round (No. 91 overall) of the 2018 NHL Draft.

Arizona general manager Bill Armstrong told reporters that Smith would be making his NHL debut against the New Jersey Devils at Gila River Arena on Tuesday.

“We are very pleased to sign Nate to a two-year contract,” Armstrong said in a press release.

“Nate was one of the best forwards in the NCAA this season and helped lead Minnesota State to the Frozen Four championship game. We are very excited to have him join our organization.”

The 23-year-old forward recorded 50 points (second-most in NCAA) on 19 goals and 31 assists (tied for third) in 38 games for Minnesota State this season — good enough to see Smith finish as a Hobey Baker top 10 finalist.

He was also named the Central College Hockey Association’s 2021-22 Forward of the Year and selected as First Team All-CCHA while finishing second on the team in goals and tied for the lead in assists.

In his 101-game college career, the 6-foot-1, 185-pound Smith amassed 102 points (37 goals, 65 assists).

Smith also represented Team USA at the 2022 Winter Olympics where he scored one goal and notched one assist for two points.

“It’s been a pretty quick turnaround,” Smith told reporters on Monday. “Everything is just coming at me really fast, but I’m excited to be here, for tomorrow and to get everything going.”

The Coyotes host the Devils on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. on ESPN 620 AM / 98.7 FM HD-2.

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