OTTAWA - The Ottawa Senators announced today that the club has signed forwards Jakub Culek and Darren Kramer to three-year entry-level contracts. Culek recently completed his third full season with the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Rimouski Océanic while Kramer recently completed his final season of major junior eligibility with the Western Hockey League’s Spokane Chiefs.
Culek, 19, a native of Klatovy in the Czech Republic, matched his Canadian Hockey League career high with 13 goals while adding 27 assists for 40 points and skating in 55 regular season contests in 2011-12. In 173 career major junior games (all with the Océanic) he recorded 109 points (33 goals, 76 assists) and 149 penalty minutes. Additionally, he was a member of the Czech Republic’s entry at each of the last two IIHF world junior hockey championships at which he recorded six points (two goals, four assists) over 13 games.
A native of Peace River, Alta., Kramer, 20, has recorded at least 200 penalty minutes over the last four seasons, the first two of which were spent with the Alberta Junior Hockey League’s Grande Prairie Storm. While serving as the Chiefs’ team captain for the first time in his CHL career in 2011-12, he established new major junior career highs in goals (22), assists (18) and points (40) while skating in all but one of 72 regular season contests. Over a two-season WHL career with Spokane, Kramer registered 54 points (30 goals, 24 assists) while amassing 506 penalty minutes.
Ottawa’s third-round selection (76th overall) in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, Culek contributed 11 points (four goals, seven assists) while skating in each of the Océanic’s 21 post-season contests in 2012, when the team was elimintated by the league-champion Saint John Sea Dogs in the President’s Cup final. In 38 career post-season contests with the Océanic, Culek has registered 22 points (10 goals, 12 assists) and 34 penalty minutes.
The Senators’ first sixth-round pick (156th overall) in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, Kramer ranked second among all WHL players with 200 penalty minutes in 2011-12 after leading the league with a career-high 306 penalty minutes as a rookie in 2010-11. In 29 career post-season contests with the Chiefs, he recorded 14 points (eight goals, six assists) while registering 41 penalty minutes.
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