COYOTES SIGN TWO TOP PROSPECTS LISIN & STEPHENSON
GLENDALE, ARIZONA -- Phoenix Coyotes General Manager Michael Barnett announced today that the Coyotes have signed right wing Enver Lisin and defenseman Logan Stephenson to entry-level contracts. As per club policy, terms of the contracts were not disclosed.
One day after Wayne Gretzky signed a 5-year deal to remain as the team's head coach, the Coyotes were able to sign two of their top prospects with only 26 minutes remaining before the 5:00 p.m. EDT deadline.
"These two players both have bright futures in pro hockey," said Barnett. "We used valuable 2nd round selections to pick them. Today, they look to have been great choices. It's a big day for the future of the Coyotes."
Lisin and Stephenson will be at the Coyotes' summer conditioning camp in Glendale from July 3-9. In September, both players will attend the team's main training camp and will be expected to compete for jobs at the NHL level immediately.
"Lisin can flat out fly," said Barnett. "His speed is at the top end of all NHL forwards. Stephenson will make you pay to come down his side of the rink. He won't take a step backwards."
The 20-year-old Lisin played in 43 games this past season with Ak Bars Kazan in Russia and collected 7-5-12, a +4 plus/minus rating and 26 penalty minutes (PIM). He ranked tied for 9th in goals on his club. The 6-2, 190-pound forward also played in 13 playoff games with Ak Bars Kazan, recording 3-1-4, +3 and 6 PIM.
In international competition, Lisin helped Russia win the silver medal in both the 2005 and 2006 World Junior Tournaments. The Moscow, Russia native collected 2-3-5 and +7 in 6 games at the 2005 World Junior Championship (4th on team in scoring) and 2-0-2 and 2 PIM in 6 games at the 2006 World Junior Championship.
The 6-foot-3, 190-pound Stephenson registered 10-43-53 and 162 PIM in 71 games with Tri-City of the Western Hockey League (WHL) and was named to the WHL Second All-Star Team. Among all defensemen in the WHL, he ranked tied for 3rd in assists, tied for 5th in points, 5th in PIM and tied for 11th in goals. He also played in 5 playoff games, tallying a team-high 18 PIM.
Stephenson finished 2nd on his team in assists, PIM and plus/minus (+5), 3rd in points and 6th in goals. The 20-year-old also led all of his team's defensemen in every category including goals, assists, points, plus/minus and power play goals (5). The Saskatoon, Saskatchewan native earned an invitation to Team Canada's World Junior Evaluation Camp in 2005.
Both Lisin (50th overall) and Stephenson (35th overall) were originally drafted by the Coyotes in the 2nd round of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft.