Preds sign prospects Santorelli, Laakso and Grumet-Morris
/ Nashville Predators
Nashville Predators Executive Vice President/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed forward Mike Santorelli (MIGHK SAN-tohr-ehl-ee), defenseman Teemu Laakso (TEE-moo LACK-so) and goaltender Dov Grumet-Morris (DOHV GRUM-mit MAW-rihs).
Santorelli, 21 (12/14/85), completed his junior season at Northern Michigan (CCHA) in 2006-07, earning a spot on the 2006-07 RBK Hockey All-American West Team (Second Team) and the All-CCHA First Team. The Vancouver native led the conference in goals (30) and power-play goals (11) and also led the Wildcats in points (30g-17a-47pts) and plus-minus rating (+6). Following the season, the 6-0, 190-pound forward was honored at Northern Michigan with the Gary Emmons Most Valuable Player Award, the Bill Joyce Best Forward Award and the Steve Bozek Plus-Minus Award.
Santorelli was originally Nashville’s sixth choice, 178th overall (sixth round), in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft. His brother Mark, a forward for the WHL’s Chilliwack Bruins, was drafted by Nashville in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.
Santorelli’s contract is a three-year deal that will pay him $475,000 in the first season, $500,000 in the second season and $525,000 in the third season at the NHL level. He will be paid $60,000 at the minor-league level throughout the length of the contract.
Laakso, 19 (8/27/87), played his second full season in the Finnish Elite League this past year with HIFK Helsinki, registering nine points (3g-6a) and 70 penalty minutes in 50 games. The Tuusula, Finland native also represented his country at the World Junior Championships for the third time. He led the tournament in penalty minutes (52) in 2007 after leading tournament defensemen in goals (3) in a bronze-medal winning effort the year before. The 6-0, 200-pound defenseman was originally Nashville’s second choice, 78th overall (third round), in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. He will remain in Finland for the 2007-08 season.
Laakso’s contract is a three-year deal that will pay him $475,000 in the first season, $500,000 in the second year and $525,000 in the third year at the NHL level. He will be paid $62,500 at the minor-league level throughout the length of the contract. Grumet-Morris, 25 (2/28/82), played his second professional season in 2006-07 after a four-year career at Harvard University (ECAC).
The 6-2, 198-pound netminder compiled a .926 save percentage and a 2.30 goals-against average in 17 American Hockey League games with Portland, Hamilton and Manitoba and posted an 11-8-3 record with a 2.77 GAA in 23 games with the ECHL’s Cincinnati Cyclones. In 2005-06, the Evanston, Ill. native’s first pro season, he backstopped the Laredo Bucks to the Central Hockey League championship.
Grumet-Morris was originally Philadelphia’s fourth choice, 161st overall (fifth round), in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft. He signed as a free agent with Nashville to a one-year contract that will pay him $475,000 at the NHL level and $60,000 at the minor-league level.