The National Hockey League’s New York Islanders have signed former Melville Millionaires forward Reece Newkirk to a three-year, entry-level contract, the club announced Thursday.
Newkirk, 20, scored four goals and added eight helpers in six games to start the 2020-2021 Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League campaign, as a loan player from the Western Hockey League’s Portland Winterhawks.
A 5-foot-11, 182-pound playmaker, Newkirk had points in all of the Mils’ games this past campaign until the shutdown, highlighted by a three-point night Nov. 13 at the Weyburn Red Wings in which he notched the game-winner shorthanded with 32 seconds remaining in regulation.
“I’m just super honored and excited to sign my first NHL contract with the New York Islanders,” Newkirk said to the Portland Winterhawks website.
“I want to thank my parents, my coaches, my teammates, billets, and agents for everything they’ve done for me. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today and I’m super excited for my upcoming future with the New York Islanders organization.”
The Moose Jaw, SK native appeared in 222 WHL contests for the Oregon-based WHL team, and was picked in the fifth round, 147th overall by the Islanders in the 2019 NHL Draft.