UConn men’s hockey made two additions to its roster for this upcoming season, a source told The UConn Blog: Defenseman Andrew Lucas, a transfer from UVM, and freshman forward Samu Salminen.
Lucas is listed at 5-foot-11, 161 pounds with a right-handed shot. As a freshman, he led Vermont with 15 points (five goals, 10 assists) and finished third on the team with 12 points (three goals, nine assists). Overall, Lucas totaled nine goals and 23 assists in 81 games with the Catamounts. He wore the captain’s “C” as a sophomore and did not miss a single game throughout his three seasons in Burlington.
Meanwhile, Salminen is an ‘03 prospect out of Helsinki, Finland. He was taken in the third round (68th overall) of the 2021 NHL Draft by the New Jersey Devils (68th overall) and was originally committed to Denver — the defending national champions. Salminen is listed at 6-foot-3, 190 pounds with a left-handed shot and is expected to be a top-nine center for the Huskies right away.
“Size, face-offs, scoring ability, he’s got all that. And all around he’s just a really bright, good person,” Denver coach David Carle told The Athletic. “He’s a real team-first guy too. When you text him about his games, he’s quick to deflect from his own play, good or bad, and talk about the team. He cares about winning and he cares about the team. And I think that’s why you’ve seen him as a captain.”
Ahead of the draft, Elite Prospects wrote a scouting wrote on Salminen:
The hallmark of his game is his intelligence. Salminen sees plays developing several steps in advance and plans his every step accordingly, whether he has possession or not. He has that goal-scorer’s knack for finding the right place to set up shop, and his one- and two-touch finishing game never fails him. He’s every bit the credible shooting threat without the puck as he is with it
Last season with Jokerit U20, Salminen racked up 19 goals and 29 assists in 44 games and has spent time in the youth ranks of the Finnish national team.
Lucas and Salminen are likely to be the final additions to UConn’s 2022 recruiting class, though it’s always possible for things to change. The Huskies will bring in four transfers and 12 freshman — all but four of whom are forwards.