April 5, 2014
MADISON, Wis. -- Wisconsin sophomore forward Nic Kerdiles (Irvine, Calif.) has given up his final two years of eligibility to sign a three-year, entry-level contract with the NHL's Anaheim Ducks. Kerdiles (pronounced Kehr-DEE-lehs) was a second-round pick, 36th overall, in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft by the Ducks.
A 2014 second-team All-Big Ten selection, Kerdiles will rank among the top scorers in UW history, despite playing just two seasons as a Badger. A left-handed shot, Kerdiles finishes his collegiate career with 26 goals, 45 assists and 71 points in 60 games played. He also had seven game-winning goals, five power-play goals, two short-handed tallies and opened six games with the first goal. He finished second on the Badgers with 15 goals and 38 points in just 28 games during the 2013-14 campaign.
With a 1.18 points-per-game career scoring average, Kerdiles is second in scoring average during the Mike Eaves' coaching era at Wisconsin (since 2002) behind only current San Jose Sharks' star Joe Pavelski's 1.20 points-per-game mark. The 1.18 points per game for Kerdiles ranks 19th all-time at UW.
This season, Kerdiles averaged 1.36 points per game, which currently ranks fifth in the country and is the highest mark for any sophomore in the nation. The average is best in the Big Ten, as was his 1.57 points-per-game mark when looking at conference action only.
Leading scorer for the 2014 U.S. National Junior Team with seven points in five games, Kerdiles was the 2013 WCHA Final Five Most Outstanding Player for pacing the Badgers to the 2013 WCHA tournament crown, and scoring the game-winning goal in the title game. The WCHA accolades helped him earn the Hockey Commissioners' Association Rookie of the Month for March/April in 2013. Kerdiles also was a Big Ten First Star and Second Star of the week during the just completed season.
The 6-1 and 201-pound forward opened the 2013-14 season with points in his first six games, and combined with the 12-game scoring streak he finished his 2012-13 season with, he produced the third-longest point streak in school history at 18 games with 10 goals and 27 points during the stretch.
Kerdiles also finished his career with points in his last seven outings (4 goals, 10 assists) and points in nine of his last 10 and 10 of his last 12 contests.
An Academic All-Big Ten skater, Kerdiles came to Wisconsin from the U.S. National Team Development Program.
He is the second Badger to leave school early this season, joining junior defenseman Jake McCabe, who signed earlier this week with the Buffalo Sabres and who has already skated in a pair of NHL contests.
In addition to Kerdiles and McCabe, Wisconsin seniors Tyler Barnes, Frankie Simonelli and Michael Mersch have so far signed professional contracts since the conclusion of UW's season last Friday.