Hurricanes sign Russian Tolchinsky to 3-year ELC

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Peter Koutroumpis, Triangle Sports Network
Peter Koutroumpis, Triangle Sports Network

RALEIGH, N.C.After making an impressive debut as an invitee at the Carolina Hurricanes prospect camp held back in July, undrafted free agent forward Sergey Tolchinsky signed a three-year, entry-level contract with team on Thursday.

Ron Francis, vice president of hockey operations, announced that the team had agreed to terms with the 18-year-old that will pay Tolchinsky $550,000 at the NHL level or $55,000 at the American Hockey League (AHL) level in the first year, $550,000 in the NHL or $67,500 in the AHL in the second year, and $575,000 in the NHL or $67,500 in the AHL in the third year. He will also receive a signing bonus of $150,000.

Tolchinsky played the 2012-13 season with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), finishing with 26 goals and 25 assists (51 points), and posting a plus-8 plus/minus rating in 62 regular-season games.

His offensive output ranked him second in goals and tied for third in points among OHL rookies, including tallying four points (2g, 2a) in the Greyhounds’ six playoff games.

In addition to traveling to Raleigh this summer, he also attended the New York Rangers’ prospect development camp as an invitee.

However, his performance at PNC Arena impressed everyone watching him, including head coach Kirk Muller, and led to the Hurricanes signing the prospect to become its newest member of the organization.

“There’s a good example right here when you get a look at him and you get to know him – he’s got a great attitude, he’s very much an extrovert, very fun-loving guy with the other guys,” Muller said of Tolchinsky at the conclusion of camp back in July.

“He goes out and he plays hard and he produces. He’s a guy that I would say really made us turn our heads.”

Prior to coming to North America, the compact and solid-framed Tolchinsky, standing at 5-foot-8-inches and 165 pounds, played the 2011-12 season with CSKA Moscow of the Russian Junior League (MHL), scoring 19 goals, earning 15 assists (34 points) and posting a plus-17 rating in 51 games played.

He added four points (2g, 2a) in 15 games during CSKA Moscow’s run to the 2012 Kharlamov Cup final, where his team fell to Omsk in five games.

Tolchinsky’s international playing experience includes representing Russia in several international competitions, including the 2013 International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Under-18 World Championship, and the the 2012 Under-17 World Hockey Challenge where he notched a hat trick in the gold-medal game in which Russia defeated the United States, 7-4.

As a highly-rated international prospect, the Greyhounds selected Tolchinsky in the first round, 12th overall, in the 2012 Canadian Hockey League (CHL) Import Draft.