Canes ink defenseman Morrow to entry-level deal

Canes ink defenseman Morrow to entry-level deal

The Carolina Hurricanes signed one of their top prospects Tuesday with University of Massachusetts defenseman Scott Morrow joining the club on a three-year entry-level contract.

Morrow joins the Hurricanes less than a week after UMass was eliminated by nine-time national champions, the University of Denver, in a double-overtime game in the opening round of the Division I men’s NCAA tournament.

He finished this season with six goals and 30 points in 37 games which ranked tied for 13th among defensemen in the nation.

Because Morrow graduated school in three years, it meant he was slated to become an unrestricted free agent in August. His deal will start this season which means he’ll earn $807,500 at the NHL level in the 2024-25 season and $832,500 at the NHL level in the 2025-26 season.

“Scott is a dynamic, offensive-minded defenseman who has consistently been one of the top-performing blueliners in college hockey,” Canes general manager Don Waddell said in a statement. “He has shown the drive and dedication to graduate in three years, and we look forward to the next steps in his development.

The 21-year-old Morrow was a second-round pick by the Hurricanes back in 2021. He burst onto the scene as a freshman who scored 13 goals and 33 points in 37 games for the Minutemen, a year after they won the first national title in program history.

Morrow had nine goals and 31 points in 25 games in 2022-23 before having his third consecutive 30-point campaign this season. He leaves UMass with 28 goals and 94 points in 109 games for an average of 0.86 points per game.

His arrival now presents the Hurricanes with the decision to have him play in the AHL or the NHL.

The Hurricanes are the only NHL team without an AHL affiliate this season, and it’s led to a few of their prospects in the AHL playing for different teams throughout the year. It’s possible the Canes could look to do the same with Morrow or try to find space for him on their roster that currently has seven defensemen.