Forwards Nick Bjugstad and Zach Budish are going pro, on day after defenseman Nate Schmidt announced the same thing.
Bjugstad's deal with Florida is official, and the U of M put out a press release this afternoon:
“I can’t thank the University of Minnesota enough for three great years. I loved every minute of my time here, and I am thankful for the opportunity to play for the Gophers,” Bjugstad said.
No Gopher tallied more goals over the last three seasons than Bjugstad with 54 while the junior tallied 98 total points in 109 career games. In Bjugstad’s final two seasons with the program, the Gophers earned two-straight MacNaughton cups as Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) regular-season champions and two NCAA tournament berths including the team’s run to the Frozen Four in 2011-12.
“Nick is certainly ready to take his game to the next level,” Minnesota head coach Don Lucia said. “We appreciate his loyalty and dedication to Gopher hockey. He has grown a lot in his three seasons with the program, and he clearly has a bright future ahead of him.”
Budish, meanwhile, is going to sign with Nashville. No formal deal has been announced, but our own Michael Russo tweeted this morning. Erik Haula could be next, which means the Gophers would lose a lot of offense: