The Canes have signed free-agent defenseman Beau Schmitz to a three-year, entry-level contract. The deal will pay Schmitz $525,000 per year at the NHL level, or $50,000 per year at the minor-league level, as well as a $50,000 signing bonus.
Schmitz, 21, completed his fourth season of major-junior hockey in 2011-12, leading all Plymouth Whalers defensemen in goals (14), assists (40) and points (54). He ranked tied for third among all Ontario Hockey League (OHL) skaters with a plus-37 plus/minus rating, while playing in 62 of Plymouth’s 68 regular-season games.
Schmitz was the Whalers’ captain in 2011-12. In four seasons with Plymouth, Schmitz, listed at 5-10 and 193 pounds, had 151 points and accumulated 350 penalty minutes in 244 career OHL regular-season games.
Schmitz played for the Hurricanes’ squads at the NHL prospects’ tournament in Traverse City, MI, in 2010 and 2011.