Gophers defenseman LaCombe signs entry-level deal with Anaheim

Another member of the University of Minnesota men’s hockey team is jumping to the NHL.

Gophers defenseman Jackson LaCombe signed his two-year, entry-level contract with the Anaheim Ducks on Monday.

LaCombe was the Ducks’ second-round pick (39th overall) in the 2019 NHL Draft.

This season, he served as an alternate captain for Minnesota, scoring a career-high 35 points (9-26=35) and helping the Gophers reach the title game. Over his career, LaCombe played 140 games for the Gophers and is tied for 13th in program history in points by a defenseman (99) and 12th in assists (80).

The Eden Prairie native was the fourth-highest-scoring blue liner in the NCAA this year and was a nominee for the 2023 Hobey Baker Memorial Award.

He’s the third Gophers player to sign an NHL deal since Saturday’s heartbreaking loss in the NCAA championship game, following defenseman Brock Faber and forward Matthew Knies.