Prized NCAA free agent Collin Graf narrows list to 6 teams: report

NCAA Hockey: Frozen Four
Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Prized NCAA free agent Collin Graf is reportedly close to signing an NHL entry-level contract within the next 24 to 48 hours. Additional reporting indicates he’s narrowed down his list to six teams, including the Minnesota Wild, per Michael Russo.

The New York Rangers are indeed one of the teams interested in the Hobey Baker Award finalist. Forever Blueshirts learned that along with the Rangers, the Vegas Golden Knights and Nashville Predators were closely scouting the 21-year-old forward in recent weeks.

‚ÄúThere have been scouts in the building to watch Collin and many others this season,” a source told us on March 19. “Given the proximity of the campus to New York, the Rangers are regular visitors to Hamden.”

Speculation on where Graf will sign had the Bruins as a frontrunner, but multiple reports indicate that Boston has not been in on him all season. The Vancouver Canucks are also reportedly not one of those half dozen teams, with indications that the Massachusetts native is looking to stay east.

Update: Per NY Post’s Mollie Walker, the Rangers are out of the running to sign Graf

Related: Rangers goalie depth chart after Hugo Ollas signing

Rangers will have competition for Collin Graf

NCAA Hockey: Frozen Four Championship Game-Quinnipiac vs Minnesota
Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Graf caught the attention of NHL scouts by helping Quinnipiac University win the 2023 NCAA National Championship, and by being named CCM/AHCA First Team All-American and ECAC First Team All-Conference as a sophomore.

He continued his excellent play this season by recording 49 points (22 goals, 27 assists) in 34 games. On Sunday, Quinnipiac was eliminated by Boston College in the NCAA tournament, after current Rangers’ prospect Drew Fortescue’s point shot was put home by Jack Malone in overtime.

The offensively gifted forward can play center or right wing, which the Rangers would certainly love to add to their prospect pipeline. Graf is also a good defensive player, which is usually the downfall for many promising prospects trying to make it to the NHL.

Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore

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