With the Ohio State Buckeyes eliminated in last night’s game against Minnesota-Duluth (who are playing BU and Brandon Hickey later today), Josh Healey became a free agent. This morning, the 22 year old was scooped up by the Flames on an entry level contract, and will be on an ATO with Stockton for the rest of the year.
— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) March 25, 2017
Healey signing here was probably one of the worst kept secrets. A dev camp invite from the past summer, Healey returned to OSU for his senior season as the team’s assistant captain. Building off of a break out junior year, he posted four goals and 21 assists in 35 games, fourth in Big Ten defensive scoring (third in 5v5).
He also has a bit of a nasty side to him. One of the reasons Healey stands out is because he likes to run people over and hits too hard for the college game. But that comes with its downsides. Twice this season, he was suspended for two games for contact to the head. Since 2015, he has faced supplemental discipline from his conference five times. For example
The Josh Healey hit on Darian Romanko that got Healey ejected pic.twitter.com/oDhiSaG2wM
— CJ Fogler (@cjzero) February 12, 2017
Josh Healey has made his mark again! Rocked two players on the same shift w/ massive elbows to the head. Is suspended for 3rd time this yr. pic.twitter.com/zsmtnHjWcY
— We Are McDavid (@BeerLeagueHeroe) March 21, 2017
Yikes. Hopefully they signed him for reasons other than that.
He’ll be headed to a crowded blueline in Stockton, who also added Flames prospect Adam Ollas Mattsson this week. The Heat already have seven active defencemen (eight when Brett Kulak returns), so there’s not a whole lot of room for Healey to squeak in. I’d imagine they’d pull guys who won’t be here next year (Kenney Morrison, Tyler Wotherspoon) for Healey.
The Flames may not be done yet for college free agents. Hickey is definitely a must-sign, and the Flames have been connected to Sean Walker, a defenceman from Bowling Green. Stay tuned.