Jim Nill and the Dallas Stars announced today the signing of 1st round draft pick, Julius Honka to a 3-year entry level deal. Capgeek.com reports the contract is for $925,000 per year, but per club policy the official terms of the contract have not yet been announced.
Honka is an offensive-style defenseman who scored 16 goals and had 40 assists with the Western Hockey League's Swift Current Broncos in 2013-14. Compared to NHL defensemen he's a bit on the small side at 5-foot-11 and just 174 lbs, but his offensive potential is, "Outstanding" says Stars director of amateur scouting Joe McDonnell, "Julius is someone who could be able to run the power play unit once he fully develops."
With Honka having signed an entry level contract with the Dallas Stars they now exert far more influence over where Honka will play next season, though he spent last season in the WHL, there has been a lot of talk after the draft that he will likely play in Finland's SM-Liiga.
"We are happy to have signed Julius quickly so that the young defenseman can continue the process of developing his game," Stars GM Jim Nill says. "He's highly skilled, moves the puck extremely well and is very competent at running the power-play. We are really excited about his potential and think he has the tools to develop into an NHL defenseman in the near future"
Honka played for his native Finland in the 2014 World Junior Championship, recording 1 assist and in 7 games on his way to winning the gold medal.