Saturday, March 29, 2008

Kalinski flies (updated)

Minnesota State junior forward Jon Kalinski has opted to forgo his senior season and is signing with the Philadelphia Flyers. Reached via cell phone on his way to the airport for a flight to Philly, Kalinski said he had every intention of returning to the Mavericks.

"Actually, I was pretty excited for the team next year," he said. Obviously, it's a big dream of mine to go to the NHL. When I got the offer, I had to take it."

While Kalinski didn't want to discuss terms of the deal, coach Troy Jutting said he's getting a contract worthy of a first-round draft pick. Kalinski was selected in the sixth round of last summer's NHL draft, his second year of draft eligibility.

"I'd like to think that means we're doing something right," Jutting said. "That's three kids in three years that the NHL didn't think could play when they got here."

Last season, junior defenseman Steve Wagner signed a free-agent contract with the St. Louis Blues. A year earlier, sophomore forward Ryan Carter signed a free-agent contract with the Anaheim Ducks. That same offseason, forward David Backes, who was drafted before he arrived at MSU, also left school early.

"Like I've said before," Jutting said. "It's what these kids dream of. It's their goal. I'm extremely happy for Jon, to get the kind of deal he got. I wish him well."


Nation said...
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Bale said...

Good for Jon. I know it sucks to lose players, but this is what college is for. Kids prepare themselves to make a living in the real world. Jon just has the opportunity to do it before he graduates. Good for him.

Sam said...

I agree with Bale. Yeah it hurts, as Maverick hockey fans, to lose these guys, but this is their dream. Most college students go to school to earn a degree that will enable them to earn a living in a specific career. However, some of these students also happen to be extraordinary athletes who know that their future career may end up be as an athlete in professional sports. They don't need a degree to prove they can play professional sports. Thus, they shouldn't be expected to always stay four years. Kalinski proved himself in two years, got drafted by the Flyers and stuck around for a third to get a bit more experience. Now that his dream job offer has presented itself, why wouldn't he take it? Maverick fans should be proud everytime one of our hockey players makes it to the pros. It's a credit to the program for producing exceptional players. Let's just hope the trend continues. Also, I'm betting Bruess will be the next early departure...