Home World San Jose Sharks sign Will Smith, who leaves Boston College

San Jose Sharks sign Will Smith, who leaves Boston College


SAN JOSE – The San Jose Sharks announced Tuesday that they’ve signed center Will Smith, the team’s top pick from the 2023 NHL Draft, to a three-year, entry-level contract.

Smith, 19, turns pro after an outstanding freshman season at Boston College, as he led all NCAA Division I players with 71 points, including 46 assists, in 41 games.

Smith’s contract includes a $855,000 base salary and a $95,000 signing bonus for each of the three years, for a cap hit of $950,000. Performance bonuses can add another $3.2 million annually to the deal.

“Can’t wait to be a part of the Sharks organization,” Smith said in a message posted on the Sharks’ account on X.

Smith and the Eagles won the Hockey East regular season and tournament championships and advanced to the NCAA Division I title game in April. After the end of the Sharks’ season, general manager Mike Grier said that he felt Smith was ready to play in the NHL.

“He’s got the brain, he’s got the talent, he’s already maturing physically,” Grier said last moth, “and so from my standpoint, I think he can play in the league.”

The Sharks selected Smith with the fourth overall pick in last year’s draft, and he immediately became the team’s top prospect.

During the 2022-2023 season, Smith played in 60 games for USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program’s Under-18 Team and had 127 points, second-most on the NTDP’s all-time single-season points list.

Now under contract, Smith is part of a new generation of players that includes fellow forwards Quentin Musty, Collin Graf, Filip Bystedt, Kasper Halttunen and defensemen Henry Thrun and Shakir Mukhamadullin, among others.

The Sharks, after winning the NHL draft lottery earlier this month, are expected to draft Boston University center and Hobey Baker award winner Macklin Celebrini with the first overall pick. Celebrini, 17, had 64 points in 38 games and was second behind Smith in Division I with a 1.68 points per game average.

Please check back for updates to this story.

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