Our long national Matt Puempel nightmare is over, as the team announces they’ve signed the 25-year old RFA to a two-year deal. Terms are currently unavailable, but the waiver-eligible winger acquired from the Rangers in the deal that sent Ryan Sproul to New York last October will almost certainly be hitting the wire again before the season starts and will continue to add depth to Grand Rapids.
The team released the following:
DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings today agreed to terms with right wing Matt Puempel on a two-year contract.
Puempel, 25, who was acquired in a trade with the New York Rangers on Oct. 21, 2017, logged 57 games with the American Hockey League’s Grand Rapids Griffins last season, totaling 54 points (22-32-54) and 21 penalty minutes en route to being named an AHL All-Star. The 6-foot-1, 205-pound winger ranked among Griffins leaders with 22 goals (T3rd), 32 assists (3rd), 54 points (3rd), 172 shots (4th) and nine power play goals (T2nd), adding four points (1-3-4) in five games during the playoffs. The former first-round pick (24th overall) of the Ottawa Senators in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft recorded three points (1-2-3) in five games with the Hartford Wolf Pack last season before being acquired by Detroit. Puempel logged time with the Rangers and Senators during the 2016-17 season, registering nine points (6-3-9) and 11 penalty minutes in 40 NHL games.
Puempel has totaled 79 NHL games since the 2014-15 season, tallying 15 points (10-5-15) and 28 penalty minutes during his time in Ottawa and New York. The 25-year-old forward has also skated in 232 career AHL games with the Binghamton Senators, Wolf Pack and Griffins, recording 168 points (83-85-168) and 163 penalty minutes since making his AHL debut during the 2011-12 season. Before beginning his professional career, the Windsor, Ontario, native skated four seasons with the Ontario Hockey League’s Peterborough Petes and Kitchener Rangers between 2009-13, where he logged 213 points (119-94-213) and 166 penalty minutes in 195 games. The winger also skated in the 2011 Canadian Hockey League Top Prospects Game and earned Rookie of the Year honors in the OHL in 2009-10, leading the league in both goals (33) and points (64) for Peterborough. Internationally, Puempel holds a pair of medals with Canada, earning a silver medal at the 2010 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge and a gold medal at the 2011 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament.
Matt Puempel, Left Wing
Born Jan 24 1993 -- Windsor, ONT
Height 6.01 -- Weight 205 -- Shoots L
Selected by Ottawa Senators round 1 #24 overall 2011 NHL Entry Draft