Cross/By S. Bradley

Considering when he was drafted by the Bruins in 2007 he was first heading to play a season in the USHL, Tommy Cross’s arrival as a pro has seemingly taken forever.

Today the former Boston College defenseman finally took that huge step by signing his entry-level deal with Boston. He’ll now report to the Providence (AHL) farm club for the weekend before the regular season ends. Providence is two points out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, but it’s a multi-team race.

Cross, the 35th overall pick in ’07, just won the national championship as a senior with BC. While serving as team captain last season, he set career highs in games played (44), assists (19) and points (24).

At 22 years old, Cross might have an age advantage come fall against some of Boston’s best defense prospects. But obviously he’ll have to fit in behind the likes of Dougie Hamilton and Ryan Krug, as well as Matt Bartkowski and David Warsofsky.