Former Penticton Vees netminder Jack LaFontaine has signed a one-year, entry-level contract with the Carolina Hurricanes in the National Hockey League (NHL), the team announced on Sunday.
LaFontaine, 24, will join the Hurricanes organization immediately after playing in his 5th year of college with the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers. The 6’2”, 204-pound netminder held a 12-8-0 record this season, posting a 2.69 goals-against average and a .900 save percentage after a banner season during the 2020/21 campaign. LaFontaine took home numerous accolades, including the Mike Richter Award as the top goaltender in Division I hockey as well as being named the Big Ten Goaltender of the Year, Big Ten Tournament Most Outstanding Player, First-Team All-American and a top-10 finalist for the Hobey Baker Award, given annually to the top player in college hockey.
The Mississauga, Ontario native played with the Vees during the 2018/19 season, recording a 30-13-1 record to go along with a 2.19 GAA and a .923 SV% as well as three shutouts. LaFontaine ranked in a tie for the league lead in save percentage and was second in the BC Hockey League in goals against average and wins, earning the Top Goaltender award as well as First-Team All-Star honours.
LaFontaine was selected in the 3rd round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft by the Hurricanes, taken 75th overall.