Ohio State junior forward Ryan Dzingel agreed to terms on an entry-level contract with the Ottawa Senators and will forgo his final season with the Buckeyes.
The Hobey Baker Award finalist is expected to join the Binghampton Senators, Ottawa's AHL affiliate and is in line for a deal at a base of $925,000 per season.
"I’m proud to say I signed with the Ottawa Senators,” Dzingel said. “It was a very difficult decision leaving my friends and the program I love. I felt like it was the right choice for me moving forward with my career, even though Ohio State is heading in the right direction. Thank you again to my teammates, coaches and fans. I will miss it."
Replacing Dzingel won't be easy. For those of you that aren't hockey fans, it'll be like attempting to replace Carlos Hyde. He led the team in scoring, and ranked seventh nationally in goals with 22. In his three seasons in Columbus, he scored 45 goals and collected 108 points in 110 games. That, and he was clutch.
Ottawa took Dzingel in the seventh round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft and began pressing for a deal after the Illinois native skyrocketed to No. 4 on the team's list of top prospects this year. The Senators held the rights to Dzingel until July 1, 2014, which essentially made Dzingel a free agent had he returned for his senior season with Ohio State.