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Gophers defenseman Nate Schmidt signs with NHL's Washington Capitals

Posted by: Michael Rand under Gophers Updated: April 2, 2013 - 1:11 PM

Nate Schmidt, who had a terrific junior season and was named first-team all-WCHA, is skipping his senior season with the Gophers and has signed a two-year entry level contract with the Washington Capitals. He was undrafted, but he showed enough over the past two seasons in particular to draw the attention of NHL teams.

Star Tribune hockey writer Michael Russo confirmed the news shortly before the University of Minnesota announced it officially.

“I wouldn’t trade my experience at the University of Minnesota for anything, and I am incredibly grateful to the team and staff for three great seasons at the ‘U,’ Schmidt said in a news release. “This wasn’t an easy decision to make, but it is the right decision, and I am looking forward to beginning the next chapter of my playing career.”

Said Gophers coach Don Lucia: “Nate is a great example of someone who was overlooked in the draft but worked hard on and off the ice to put himself in great position to become our top defenseman the last two years. He had two tremendous years and felt he was ready to take his game to the next level."

Minnesota now awaits word on three other juniors who could leave early: Zach Budish, Nick Bjugstad and Erik Haula. A tweet from Haula on Tuesday indicating Budish was also going pro with the Predators has since been deleted.

 

 

 

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Toronto 2
Detroit 3 Top 3rd Inning
Chicago WSox 1
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Pittsburgh - V. Worley
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Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
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(21) Texas A&M 52 FINAL
(9) So Carolina 28
Wake Forest 10 FINAL
ULM 17
Boise State 13 FINAL
(18) Ole Miss 35
Tulane 31 FINAL
Tulsa 38
Rutgers 41 FINAL
Washington St 38
Weber State 14 FINAL
(19) Arizona State 45
Temple 37 FINAL
Vanderbilt 7
BYU 35 FINAL
Connecticut 10
(6) Jacksonville St 7 FINAL
(8) Michigan State 45
Bowling Green 31 FINAL
Western Ky 59
TX-San Antonio 27 FINAL
Houston 7
Colorado State 31 FINAL
Colorado 17
UNLV 13 FINAL
Arizona 58
Penn State 26 FINAL
UCF 24
Troy 10 3rd Qtr
UAB 24
(7) UCLA 21 3rd Qtr
Virginia 10
Western Mich 14 3rd Qtr
Purdue 23
(5) Ohio State 6 3rd Qtr
Navy 7
Appalachian St 0 3rd Qtr
Michigan 35
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NC State 3
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