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On Marko Dano, Sami Niku and Cole Perfetti

November 9, 2020, 10:56 AM ET [18 Comments]
Anthony Travalgia
Winnipeg Jets Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
Jets sign Marko Dano to a one-year deal

Last week the Jets added to their organizational depth by signing unrestricted free agent Marko Dano to a one-year, $700,000 two-way deal.

This will mark Dano’s third stint with the Jets. He was previously traded to Winnipeg in 2016 as a part of the trade that sent Andrew Ladd to the Chicago Blackhawks. Then in 2018, Dano was claimed on waivers by the Jets after being released by the Colorado Avalanche.

Dano is currently in Slovakia playing for HK Dukla Trencin of the Slovak Tipos Extraliga, Slovakia’s highest level of professional hockey.

In his first game Dano scored twice and picked up an assist, but due to a combination of a groin injury and COVID related issues, Dano has not appeared in a game since.

The 25-year old appeared in just three games with the Columbus Blue Jackets last season, going pointless in the process. In 46 games with the Cleveland Monsters of the AHL, Dano had four goals and 15 assists in 46 games.

Dano was the Blue Jackets first-round selection in the 2013 draft but has not lived up to the hype that comes with being a first round draft pick. In 141 career NHL games, Dano has 19 goals and 26 assists for 45 points.

Dano will join a handful of forwards who will be in a camp battle for a bottom-six role with the Jets. But it’s expected Dano will start his 2020-21 campaign in the AHL where he’s played 103 career games.

Jets sign Sami Niku to two-year deal

Last week the Jets also signed restricted free agent Sami Niku to a two-year $1.45M contract.

Niku appeared in 17 games with the Jets last season, posting five assists. In 48 career games with the Jets Niku has two goals and eight assists.

It’s believed Niku’s name often had been discussed in trade negotiations, especially ones involving Patrik Laine.

Niku is a valuable depth defenseman, being named the AHL’s defenseman of the year in 2018.

Like Dano, Niku joins a crowded group of Jets players vying for a spot on the Jets roster. With how crowded the Jets blueline already is, especially on the left side, Niku’s shot of making the Jets roster out of camp is slim, even with Niku being able to play on the right side.

Cole Perfetti invited to Team Canada camp

Jets 2020 1st round pick Cole Perfetti has been invited to Canada’s World Junior camp. Perfetti and 45 other Canadians will battle for a chance to represent Team Canada in the upcoming World Junior Championship.

The camp begins November 16 in Red Deer.

Perfetti and the OHL are not expected to begin their season until the end of January with the start of training camp. This camp and expected appearance in the World Juniors will be a good start to the season for Perfetti.

Perfetti attended this very same camp a year ago, only to be cut along the way. But now a year later, and Perfetti’s game much better than it was a year ago, being cut from camp this time around would come as a bit of a surprise.

Intrasquad scrimmages and games against university all-star teams are all planned for the camp before the tournament kicks off in Edmonton on Christmas Day.

*Updated 11/9/20 11:37AM EST

Monday morning the Jets announced they have signed Perfetti to an entry level contract with an annual average value of $1,658,333.

I will have more on this after Perfetti speaks to the media this afternoon.
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