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Sharks ink highly-coveted NCAA free agent Graf to ELC

Collin Graf Quinnipiac Collin Graf - Quinnipiac Bobcats

The San Jose Sharks announced the signing of Quinnipiac forward Colin Graf to an entry-level contract beginning with the 2023-2024 season.

The 21-year-old spent the last two seasons with the Bobcats and had more than a dozen NHL teams eyeing him during this year’s college free agent cycle.

“Graf has excelled at the collegiate level, finishing as a Hobey Baker Top-10 finalist for the last two seasons,” Sharks general manager Mike Grier said in a statement. “His on-ice awareness allows him to process the game at a high level, and is a unique player with a quality 200-foot game who excells in the offensive zone. We are excited to have him join the organization.”

Graf played in 34 games this past season for the Bobcats, scoring 22 goals and adding 27 assists for 49 points. He has 21 goals and 38 assists in 41 games the year before as Quinnipiac won their first ever Frozen Four title.

“He’s an interesting player, considered one of the jewels of this free agent class. He scored a lot of goals this year at Quinnipiac and had upwards of 20 NHL teams interested in him,” TSN Hockey Insider Chris Johnston said on Tuesday’s edition of Insider Trading.

The Lincoln, Mass., native began his collegiate career at Union College but elected to transfer to Quinnipiac after his freshman season. He had a total of 54 goals in his three seasons at the NCAA level.