DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings have signed top prospects Mitch Callahan and Andrej Nestrasil to 1-year deals.
Details of the right wingers' contracts have not been released.
Callahan, 22, and Nestrasil, 23, have spent the past three seasons with the Grand Rapids Griffins. Nestrasil split the 2012-13 season between the Griffins and the Toledo Walleye, which is Detroit's ECHL affiliate club.
About Mitch Callahan
Callahan -- a native of California -- was selected in the 6th round, 180th overall by Detroit in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. He spent three seasons in the WHL with the Kelowna Rockets where he scored 54 points in 62 games during his final junior season.
At 6 feet, 190 pounds, Callahan has become an exciting winger for the Griffins. He's a physical presence on offense who knows how to put the puck in the net. In 70 games this past season with Grand Rapids he notched 26 goals, 18 assists and 51 penalty minutes (he had 93 penalty minutes in as many games the season before and 103 penalty minutes in 48 games before that -- he's not shy about dropping the gloves).
He blossomed during the 2013 AHL playoffs, scoring 6 goals and 5 assists in 24 games to help the Griffins grab the Calder Cup.
Callahan gained some Internet fame this past season when he tweeted a picture of his face after taking a puck in the mouth during a game against Iowa.
He debuted with the Red Wings in one game this past season. He scored this nice goal during last year's preseason:
About Andrej Nestrasil
The Red Wings selected Nestrasil at 75th overall in the 3rd round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. At 6-foot-2, 210 pounds he was a force to reckon with in the QMJHL. He put up 57 points in 66 games with the Victoriaville Tigres in 2008-09, then 51 points in 50 games the next season with the Tigres.
He wasn't finished. In his final junior season with Prince Edward Island Rocket, Nestrasil scored 19 goals and 51 assists for 70 points in 58 games.
His pro career started with the Walleye in the 2011-12 season. He scored 41 points with the team in 40 games during the 2012-13 season.
This past season, Nestrasil played 70 games with the Griffins, scoring 16 goals and 20 assists. He posted 6 points in 10 playoff games.
He is a native of Prague, Czech Republic.
What to expect in Detroit
Expect to see both of these wingers in the preseason, but anything more is unclear. The Red Wings appear to have their forward lineups locked up, especially on the wing (I.e.: Gustav Nyquist, Tomas Tatar, Johan Franzen, Tomas Jurco, Drew Miller, Dan Cleary).
However, both Callahan and Nestrasil could fight their way into this lineup, although they will be competing with talent such as Anthony Mantha.
Barring any injuries in Detroit, these two will be playing in Grand Rapids for another season, which is great news for coach Jeff Blashill. They are top prospects who are trending in the right direction.