2014 Pulitzer Prize Winner

Olofsson leaves CC early for pros

Published: March 24, 2014, 3:07 pm, by Joe Paisley

Olofsson 2The Minnesota Wild signed former Colorado College defenseman Gustav Olofsson to a three-year entry level contract starting next season.

The NHL team announced Monday afternoon that the 6-foot-4, 191-pounder will report to the Iowa Wild of the American Hockey League later this week on an amateur tryout. He was Minnesota’s second-round (46th overall) pick in the 2013 draft.

The native of Sweden played one season at CC, recording eight points (four goals) in 30 games.

“Goose was a very fun guy to have on the team,” Tigers assistant Eric Rud said. “We were happy to have him on our team for a year and we wish him the best as he continues his career.”

Olofsson helped Sweden to a silver medal at the 2014 IIHF world junior championships in Malmo, Sweden in early January. He tied for second in defenseman scoring with five points (four assists), which stimulated interest from the Wild for him to join the Western Hockey League’s Portland (Ore.) Winterhawks.

At that time, Olofsson said he wanted to stay at the school.

“That (WHL) will always be there because they have my (major junior) rights,” he said. “This is where I want to be and that is why I am here.”

The Wild’s interest in Olofsson, who told CC of his decision on Sunday, never abated.
“We’re excited to get Gus under contract,” assistant general manager Brent Flahr said. “His performance this year at the world junior championships and at Colorado College exceeded our expectations and we’re confident that he’s ready for the next challenge in his young career. His skill set really excites us going forward. We’re looking forward to see him continue his development at the pro level.”

He may end up in Portland next season while he physically matures. At 19, he is one of the youngest in the AHL.

CC goalie Tyler Marble congratulated his former teammate via Twitter.

“We will all miss you here at school,” he told Olofsson. “Best of luck!”

Olofsson is the third NCHC player to leave early, joining Minnesota-Duluth junior forward Caleb Herbert and league Player of the Year and junior forward Josh Archibald of Nebraska-Omaha in the pros.