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Bowled Over: Islanders sign defense prospect Bolduc to ELC

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He’s a big boy.

Rouyn-Noranda Huskies v Blainville-Boisbriand Armada Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images

This is not the droid you were looking for. But it’s still a big one (literally) for the Islanders.

The team announced today that it has signed defense prospect Samuel Bolduc to a three-year entry level contract. The 6’-4” native of Laval, Quebec was selected in the second round of last year’s draft.

Bolduc had 43 points on 11 goals and 32 assists in 61 games this season split between the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada and the Sherbrooke Phoenix of the QMJHL. He was traded midseason to a powerhouse Sherbrooke team and probably had a chance at a Memorial Cup before the COVID-19 pandemic scuttled the junior hockey season. His junior totals are 22 goals and 72 assists in 189 career QMJHL games.

In a recent look at the Islanders top prospects for The Athletic, Arthur Staple had Bolduc ranked as the team’s second best overall behind WHL defenseman Bode Wilde. Expert Corey Pronman told Staple that Bolduc has the tools but needs some work (as most prospects do).

“He’s big and mobile, has some offensive touch, but I’m not convinced he’s a natural puck-mover for the NHL level,” Pronman said. “He was on the top PP on the top team in the Q after he was traded, so he started putting up more numbers and I think he has enough skill to be on the NHL radar.”

And here’s the money breakdown, courtesy of Capfriendly:

Bolduc is eligible to play in the AHL next season (whenever that starts), which gives the Islanders a few options in terms of where to use him. Assuming we get a normal training camp, expect him to spend the entirety of 2020-21 in Bridgeport. But you never know.

Also, very important to note going forward: