By: Mark Allred | Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277
The Boston Bruins announced this afternoon that the team signed forwards Cameron Hughes and Joona Koppanen to one-year, two-way deals. Both players have spent a significant amount of time developing with the NHL Bruins top minor-pro affiliate, the Providence Bruins, in recent years. Both players agreed to an NHL salary cap hit of $750K.
Hughes, a 24-year-old Edmonton, Alberta, Canada native, was selected in the sixth round of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft from the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida. The 5′-11″ 180-pound forward has been a valued asset in former Providence Head Coach Jay Leach’s system and with him coming back for another year. Cameron is a versatile player that has a decent two-way defensive-forward style game and the ability to play up the middle or on the left side when needed.
As an AHL rookie in the 2018-19 campaign, the former NCAA Wisconsin Badger posted 13-15-28 career numbers in 52 games played. Last season in a 25 game abbreviated AHL regular season due to the Covid-19 pandemic; he posted 5-16-21 numbers as the team’s assistant captain. Hughes has 24-44-68 totals in 135 career AHL games and has seen action in two games on separate recalls posting zero points in those opportunities.
Koppanen, another versatile forward who can play up the middle and the left wing, is a big rugged 6′-5″ 205-pound 23-year-old Finnish native selected by the B’s in the fifth round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft from the First Niagra Center in Buffalo, New York. Joona came to North America for minor-pro development in the 2018-19 season; he had a decent career of international hockey playing up the levels in his home country with the IIves organization.
Since being on this side of the Atlantic, Ocean Koppanen has primarily played three full seasons with the Providence Bruins and a few trips to the lower ECHL with the once affiliated Atlanta Gladiators. In 119 career games with the Providence club, Koppanen posted 16-12-28 numbers, and when ice wasn’t available at the AHL level, he would appear in 12 games with ECHL Atlanta, contributing 1-5-6 numbers during two different re-assignments.