The Buffalo Sabres today announced the signing of forward Justin Kea to a three year entry level deal. The Sabres drafted Kea in the third round of the 2012 NHL draft. He was drafted 73rd overall.
This is the same draft class that brought you the likes of Mikhail Grigorenko and Zemgus Girgensons for the Buffalo Sabres in the first round and Jake McCabe in the second round.
Justin Kea just completed his fourth season with the Saginaw Spirit of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL). This season saw Kea log career high records in goals with twenty-two, assists with twenty-seven, and points with forty-nine. He scored a goal and added three assists in this years five game series against the Erie Otters.
Hockeys Future ranks the possibility of success for Kea as a “c”.
At 20 years old, the Ontario, Canada native will most likely suit up in red, white, and blue next year as a member of the Rochester Americans.
Kea has been signed ahead of second round draft pick Jake McCabe, as McCabe is vested in the NCAA system. McCabe is heading into his senior year at Wisconsin. Wisconsin lost in this years Frozen Four tournament in the first round, falling to North Dakota. Wisconsin has not made it to the National Championship game since 2010.