12:40pm: It’s been a pretty good few weeks for Marc Del Gaizo. After helping UMass to the national championship, the college defenseman is closing in on a deal with the Nashville Predators according to Frank Seravalli of TSN. When signed, the three-year entry-level deal will begin in 2021-22 and Del Gaizo will join the Chicago Wolves on an amateur tryout for the rest of the season.
The 21-year-old Del Gaizo was selected 109th overall in 2019 after a spectacular freshman season. Playing alongside Cale Makar and forming one of the most impressive pairs in the entire nation, Del Gaizo put up 13 goals and 29 points in that freshman campaign, earning Hockey East All-Rookie honors in the process.
Though the numbers have come down a bit since Makar’s departure, there certainly hasn’t been a significant drop-off from Del Gaizo’s play. The somewhat undersized defenseman has recorded 29 points in 49 games over the last two seasons while taking on even more responsibility. His future has gone from mid-round afterthought to real NHL prospect in a hurry, though there is still some polishing left to do at the minor league level.