Left-winger James Van Riemsdyk signs with Philadelphia Flyers

PHILADELPHIA – James van Riemsdyk is giving up his final two years of college hockey to join the Philadelphia Flyers.

Van Riemsdyk, the second overall pick in the 2007 NHL draft, signed an entry-level deal on Wednesday that takes effect next season. The University of New Hampshire star also signed an amateur tryout for the remainder of this season and has been assigned to the Philadelphia Phantoms of the AHL, the Flyers’ affiliate.

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“We are pleased to have James in the fold and look forward to monitoring his development more closely,” Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren said in a statement.

“It was a difficult decision for James to leave school, but we both believed that it was in his best interest to do so.”

The left-winger led New Hampshire with 17 goals and 23 assists this season.