As soon as Harvard lost to Nebraska-Omaha in the NCAA Midwest Regional, attention turned to the future of Harvard junior forward and Hobey Baker finalist Jimmy Vesey, and his future with the Nashville Predators, who hold his NHL rights after drafting him in 2012.
Vesey had an incredible season for the Crimson this year. He led the nation in goals scored with 32 and was third nationally in points with 58. We ranked Vesey as the eighth-best NHL prospect in college hockey. There was speculation that Vesey could jump immediately into the Predators line-up to finish out this year's NHL season.
But according to TSN's Bob McKenzie, Vesey has informed the Predators that he will be returning to Harvard for his senior season:
Harvard's Jimmy Vesey has informed NSH he intends to return to school next season. He won't be turning pro right now.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) March 31, 2015
That's a tough blow for the Predators who not only lose on Vesey's for the end of this season and next season, but also potentially risk losing Vesey as a free agent if he doesn't sign by August 15th of next summer.
Meanwhile, getting Vesey back is a huge gain for Harvard. Vesey will likely be one of the front-runners for the Hobey Baker Award again next season.
Update: Vesey confirmed the news himself via Twitter:
Very excited to be returning to @Harvard_Hockey this fall for my senior season. Can't wait to see what the boys can accomplish next year!!— Jimmy Vesey (@19Vesey) April 1, 2015