The Chicago Blackhawks have signed goaltender prospect Collin Delia to a two-year entry-level contract, the team announced Friday. He joins Jean-Francois Berube, Jeff Glass, and Matt Tomkins as minor league options for the organization next season.
Delia spent the past two summers at the Blackhawks’ prospect camps, where he impressed enough to get a contract offer. He joins Alexandre Fortin as unsigned players to play so well at recent prospect camps that Chicago opted to bring them into the fold.
Over the past three seasons, Delia has played between the pipes at Merrimack College. The 23-year-old wasn’t great as a sophomore with a .889 save percentage over 26 games, but improved significantly as a junior with a .927 save percentage over 21 games.
That improvement, coupled with his solid play at the prospect camps, likely helped sell the Blackhawks on giving him a contract. Measuring in at 6’2 and 190 pounds, he definitely has the length to develop into an NHL goaltender in short order.
However, while goaltenders do typically develop more slowly than other players, it should be noted that Delia isn’t exactly a long-term project like, say, Wouter Peeters. But given that the Blackhawks’ goalie prospect list is basically just Peeters at this point, it makes sense to take a shot on Delia if the team liked what it saw earlier this month. Maybe he can be a Scott Darling-like steal.