Connecticut loses leading scorer Letunov a year early to San Jose

2 Jan 16: Max Letunov (Connecticut - 27). The University of Connecticut Huskies play against the Ferris State University Bulldogs in the Mariucci Classic third place game at Mariucci Arena in Minneapolis, MN. (Jim Rosvold)
Maxim Letunov finishes his UConn career ninth all-time in D-I career points (photo: Jim Rosvold).

The San Jose Sharks announced on Wednesday that the NHL club has signed Connecticut junior Maxim Letunov to a standard, entry-level contract.

Letunov played in 105 career games during his three years in Storrs, recording 95 points on 35 goals and 60 assists. In just three seasons, Letunov rose to ninth in the UConn Division I record book (1998-present) in career points. His 60 career assists is tied for fifth on the UConn Division I list.

During the 2017-18 season, Letunov led the Huskies in scoring with 28 points (12 goals, 16 assists) in helping guide UConn to a program-best 11 Hockey East wins and a fifth-place finish in the league. He was named to the Hockey East All-Star Second Team this week.

During his freshman season, Letunov earned Hockey East All-Rookie honors and Second Team All-Star accolades after posting 40 points on 16 goals and 24 assists. He set new UConn Division I rookie records for points, goals and assists and his 40 points ranked fourth in the Division I record book for a season.

Letunov was originally a second-round draft pick (52nd overall) by the St. Louis Blues in the 2014 NHL Draft. In March 2015, his rights were traded by the Blues to the Arizona Coyotes for defenseman Zbynek Michalek and a conditional third-round pick in the 2015 draft. In June 2016, his rights, along with a 2017 sixth-round draft pick, were traded by the Coyotes to the Sharks for a 2017 third-round draft pick and a 2016 fourth-round pick.