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Red Wings sign defenseman Filip Hronek to Entry-Level Contract

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2016 NHL Draft - Portraits Photo by Jeffrey T. Barnes/Getty Images

DETROIT, MICH — The Red Wings have announced that they have signed 2016 second-round pick Filip Hronek to a three-year entry-level contract:

Hronek was drafted by the Saginaw Spirit in the CHL Import Draft, and is expected to join the OHL club for the 2016-2017 season. Much like Vili Saarijarvi last season, Hronek received his ELC to keep him here in North America.

Scout notes from Future Considerations:

Hronek is a solid two-way defender who has a high understanding of the play around him and what his role is on the ice. He dishes some very smooth passes on the tape, but struggles to handle heavy passes himself at times. He is a speedy defender with a fluid stride, though he is lanky and there’s not much strength in his lower body to help his stride. Hronek looks very good handling the puck, especially on the power play, until he gets pressured and tends to get flustered. We would like to see him slow the play down, make his reads quicker and set up a bit better as a puck distributor. Hronek utilizes his stick and positioning to defend the rush. He’s not physical as his size is a detriment to playing that type of game. He had some very impressive moments this season, like dominating the U19, but he has a lot of work to do to round out his game and add much needed muscle.

More from the Red Wings organization:

Hronek was the Red Wings’ third draft choice overall, selected in the second round (53rd overall) of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft last month at the First Niagara Center in Buffalo, N.Y. The 18-year-old defenseman spent the 2015-16 in his native Czech Republic, suiting up in 40 games for HK Hradec Kralove in the professional league and logging four points (0-4-4) and 22 penalty minutes. Hronek also picked up 16 points (4-12-16) in 13 regular-season games and nine points (4-5-9) in 10 playoff games for the same club in the Czech under-20 junior league. He also added four points (2-2-4) and 18 penalty minutes in 12 games for HC Litomerice in second-tier Czech Republic.

The 6-foot, 163-pound native of Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic, represented his country at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship in Helsinki, Finland, registering two assists in five games as the youngest defenseman on the team. Hronek has totaled 33 points (8-25-33) in 32 career games at the Czech junior level in addition to 39 points (13-26-39) in 76 games in the Czech under-18 circuit. He recently participated in Detroit’s annual Development Camp in Traverse City, Mich., and his major junior rights were acquired by the Ontario Hockey League’s Saginaw Spirit during the 2016 CHL Import Draft on June 28.