(SOURCE: NHL.com): BOSTON – Boston Bruins General Manager Don Sweeney announced today, March 18, that the team has signed Harvard forward Ryan Donato to a two-year entry-level contract. Donato will join the Boston Bruins and will be eligible to play in tomorrow night’s game vs. the Columbus Blue Jackets at TD Garden.
The time has come for the Ryan Donato era to begin in Boston. It is expected that Donato will suit up tonight for the B’s in their matchup against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Like Charlie McAvoy, Donato’s arrival comes with quite the extra buzz. He played his college hockey in Boston, his father Ted played for the Bruins, and this season at Harvard and with the US Olympic team Donato has set the hockey world on fire with his goal scoring touch. He’s done everything right this season that he could have in order to tease B’s fans into frenzy. You can’t help but salivate at the thought of his natural scoring ability translating to the NHL game.
So when everyone sits down to watch his first game tonight I would just advise everyone that is excited, including myself, to be patient. Yes, he’s a very talented player. Yes, I think he will have a nice NHL career. I just hate to see (thanks, Twitter) people get overly excited about the shiny new toy and thus be unjustly hard on the kid when he takes his rookie lumps. The lumps are going to happen. It happened to Danton Heinen, it happened to Jake DeBrusk, it’s happening to Anders Bjork, and it happened to Brandon Carlo, and others. It’s a normal part of development.
When Donato does score his first NHL goal tonight celebrate it with perspective. Enjoy it. Enjoy that there will be plenty more. And then remind yourself not to crucify him if he gets his pocket picked later in the game and it ends up in the back of the B’s net. It’s just part of the deal.
It’s a deal you should be happy the B’s signed up for with a prospect like Ryan Donato.
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