Tuesday night the Anaheim Ducks announced the signing of big forward Antoine Laganiere who recently completed his collegiate career at Yale University as a NCAA Division I National Champion. The 6’5″-215 lb center signed a two-year entry level contract. He chose Anaheim over some reported big time teams who were seeking his services, like the Detroit Red Wings, Vancouver Canucks and the Edmonton Oilers.
Laganiere is from Cadieux, Quebec. In his four years at Yale University of the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference (ECAC) with a total of 46 G 39 A for 85 P and 137 PIM in 122 GP. In his senior season, Laganiere tallied 15 G and 14 A for 29 P in 37 GP. He scored a goal in the national semifinal against the University of Massachusetts-Lowell to help take the Bulldogs to the national championship where they would shutout Quinnipiac University. Here is Hockey’sFuture.com’s talent analysis on Laganiere:
Laganiere is a power forward who uses his frame exceedingly well in creating space and opportunities. Where this is particularly noticeable is in his strong play in the dirty areas, an attribute that has made scouts take notice, as well. Laganiere takes full advantage of his size, reach and tremendous strength in maintaining both puck control and his positioning. He is not one to shy away from the physical aspects of the game. He can deliver solid checks and is aggressive on the forecheck. He is also a competitor. One notable improvement Laganiere has made since arriving at Yale is in his skating. He is an excellent skater with great mobility and skates with long, powerful strides. His added strength has greatly enhanced his speed and agility. Laganiere possesses great hands and a blisteringly hard shot. He can make nice, crisp passes, and along with his outstanding vision, can utilize open spaces quite effectively. He also has great finishing ability. One of Laganiere’s best assets is his stick, which he uses equally well in both offensive and defensive situations.
It has been reported that Laganiere is going to report directly to Anaheim. So, it appears he will get a look or two and some ice time as well. However, it could be tough with the Ducks already having numerous centers. Especially with Nick Bonino close to a return. However, I am never against seeing what a young guy can bring to the team. I’m all for giving the big guy a chance to show what he’s got.