The Penguins have signed college free agent forward Jake Lucchini to a one-year entry-level contract, Jim Rutherford announced Monday.
The deal is for the 2019-20 season, but Lucchini will play for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton for the remainder of the season on an amateur tryout contract. The contract is only for one season because Lucchini turns 24 in May. The CBA dictates how long a player's entry-level contract must be based on their age.
Lucchini's signing comes after the conclusion of his senior year with Michigan Tech, where he led his team in scoring with 11 goals and 15 assists in 38 games as one of the team's captains. Through four years of college, Lucchini amassed 45 goals and 59 assists in 164 games and was a Hobey Baker nominee.
He's wearing No. 15 in both of these clips:
Lucchini is 5-feet-11 and 183 pounds, and plays both wing and center. While in college, Lucchini said he models his game after David Krejci. He's strong defensively, and clearly can produce offensively. Coaches have praised his work ethic and his play around the net.
The Penguins have had their eyes on Lucchini for awhile -- he was invited to last summer's prospect development camp in Cranberry. Lucchini was on the team that won the tournament and captured the Michel Briere Cup on the final day of camp.
These undrafted free agents can be hit or miss, but the Penguins have to rely on them to restock the prospect pool. Scouting reports sound good, but we'll have to wait to see how he fares with Wilkes-Barre this season. He'll be the focus of a Wilkes-Barre Watch at the earliest opportunity.