Austin, 6-foot-3 and 234 pounds, was selected by the Sabres in the seventh round of the 2012 draft. He is coming off a career season in which he had nine goals and 24 assists in 67 games split between Belleville and London in the Ontario Hockey League.
The signing was announced Thursday. NHL teams have until Sunday to sign their 2012 draft picks to retain their rights.
Unless he really collapses, I don't see him going anywhere. I've been very impressed with his composure and maturity. Once the regular season started, he was a different guy; it was like game on and almost as if he's been around for a long time.
— Florida Panthers general manager Dale Tallon on rookie defenseman Aaron Ekblad