It’s been a quiet start to the Entry Level Contract signing season which began on March 1st, but the Colorado Avalanche didn’t let the month end without any activity as they landed another highly coveted undrafted NCAA free agent in senior forward Jason Polin out of Western Michigan University.
Details ⬇️https://t.co/AqwWm2Z61O— Colorado Avalanche (@Avalanche) March 29, 2023
The contract is a one-year ELC for the following (2023-24) season, meanwhile Polin has signed a try-out agreement to join the Colorado Eagles for the rest of their campaign. The watch is on to see if the Avalanche sign any of their existing prospects, most notably defenseman Sean Behrens plus forwards Matt Stienburg and Colby Ambrosio who all saw their seasons end within the last week or so. The Eagles have been busy signing additional AHL contracts for next year as well in forward Ryan Sandelin and defenseman Kyle Mayhew.
"His consistency, his repeatability, his leadership, his everyday approach, his professionalism. All those things are Jason Polin in a nutshell."— WMU Hockey (@WMUHockey) March 28, 2023
No better choice for the @HobeyBakerAward than Jason Polin!#BroncosReign | #Pol1n4Hobey pic.twitter.com/LzDUUiLpgu
Despite putting up 30 goals in his final season playing for the Cedar Rapids Roughriders in the USHL Polin went unselected in the NHL draft. Through his four-year NCAA career he improved his offense each season until he hit the 30 goal plateau once again, which currently leads the NCAA. This spectacular senior season has brought Polin many accolades including a Hobey Baker top 10 finalist and NCHC player of the year. Polin is also another in a long line of team captains the Avalanche have brought into the organization.
The Jason Polin File— WMU Hockey (@WMUHockey) March 17, 2023
5 Hat Tricks This Season
Ties NCHC Single-Season Goals Record
Leads Team to Best NCHC Finish in Program History
First Team All-NCHC
NCHC Forward of the Year
NCHC Player of the Year
Hobey Baker Top-10 Finalist#BroncosReign pic.twitter.com/boOjcVMp4M
No doubt the 23-year old is looking for an opportunity similar to what Ben Meyers did with his signing a year ago. Although he didn’t sign with a contract year burned and NHL games to close out the year like Meyers, Polin had several suitors including, again, the Minnesota Wild. The hope is to fast track toward a NHL look and eventually role within the bottom six. Polin’s highlight reel is littered with goals scored in tight. If he brings the brand of tenacity as described below by The Athletic’s Corey Pronman in his annual college undrafted free agent list then the Avalanche might have a fit.
24. Jason Polin, RW, Western Michigan-NCHC: Polin is the right wing on that top Western Michigan line. He’s not as naturally skilled as McAllister, but he has the speed and compete level that could make himself valuable as a pro. Polin plays a direct style, often taking pucks wide and to the net. He has good hands, and has scored a lot of goals the last two seasons in college. I do have some questions about how natural a play driver he is and whether he will have offense versus men.