Josh Shalla, a high-scoring OHL winger who was picked in the 4th round (94th overall) in last summer's NHL Entry Draft, has signed his entry-level deal with the Nashville Predators following the conclusion of his junior hockey season. Thanks to Preds On The Glass for picking this up from the Saginaw Spirit:
Less than a week after closing the door on a successful career in the junior ranks, former Spirit forward Josh Shalla has put pen to paper on his first National Hockey League contract. The Nashville Predators announced today that they have signed the Whitby, Ontario native to a three year entry level contract.
Shalla can now join the Milwaukee Admirals as they open the Calder Cup playoffs Friday night against the Abbotsford Heat. For more on that series, head over to Admirals Roundtable.
Following after the jump is the Preds' press release...
Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed 2011 draft pick Josh Shalla to a three-year entry level contract. He will join Nashville's primary developmental affiliate - the American Hockey League's Milwaukee Admirals - on an Amateur Tryout Agreement (ATO) for the 2012 Calder Cup Playoffs.
Shalla, 20 (9/25/91), finished his career as the all-time leading goal scorer in Saginaw Spirit franchise history, recording 133 goals in three seasons with the club. The Whitby, Ont., has ranked among the Top 10 in Ontario Hockey League goal scoring the past two seasons, tying for eighth in 2011-12, despite missing 15 games (40), and ranking fifth in 2010-11 (47). Shalla reached the scoresheet in all but four of his final 30 2011-12 regular season games, amassing 50 points (24g-26a) in that span, to finish ninth in the OHL in points per game (53gp, 40g-36-76pts, 1.43 ppg). The 6-2, 203-pound left wing also posted 14 points (4g-10a) in 12 2012 OHL Playoff contests.
Nashville's third choice, 94th overall (fourth round), in the 2011 Entry Draft finished second in the "Hardest Shot" category and tied for second in the "Best Shot" category of the 2012 OHL Western Conference Coaches' poll in addition to being voted third-most dangerous player in the goal area for the second consecutive season.