• Nate Winans

Youngstown Phantoms' NHL Prospects

The Phantoms were a top-five team in the Eastern Conference throughout the season with high hopes for the playoffs. Although the playoffs are nice to dream about, due to COVID-19 their hopes were cut short. That didn't stop the Phantoms from having three players projected to be drafted in this year's NHL Draft.

Trevor Kuntar - Center

The leading scorer for the Phantoms was Trevor who scored 28 goals and recorded 25 assists. Not only was he the team's highest scorer, but he was also the fourth-highest scorer in the USHL. His stellar scoring abilities have him listed at #143 on the NHL Central Scouting Report for North American Skaters and as a "C" skater.

He's projected to be taken in the fourth round but the majority of scouts have him being taken in the fifth round by either the Ducks or Sharks. The Buffalo, NY native may be packing his bags after Harvard to travel across the country.

Ben Schoen - Center

Ben was on pace to smash all of his records from the previous season until the season was cut short. He had already matched his previous season's goal total (six) and was eight assists shy from hitting last season's mark. Who knows what the season could have held for Ben, but as of now, he's listed as a "C" skater and #159 on the NHL Central Scouting Report for North American Skaters. He's committed to Penn State for the 2020-21 season.

Colin Purcell - Goalie

The 6'6 goaltender from Shaker Heights, Ohio heads into the 2020 NHL Draft as the 17th ranked goalie in North America. He's also listed as a "C" skater (goalie) meaning he should be selected between the fourth and fifth rounds. The Phantoms weren't the best at helping their goalie with a relative pedestrian defense, he was still able to post a .866 save percentage on the year. He'll play at the University o Massachusetts next season.

Riley Duran - Center

Even though Riley hasn't stepped on the ice for the Phantoms, he'll be entering the draft as a member of the Phantoms organization. He's on the roster after playing for the Cape Cod Whalers and Lawrence Academy last season. Riley holds a "C" skater rating along with being ranked #95 on the NHL Central Scouting Report for North American Skaters. After the 2020-21 season with the Phantoms, he'll play for the Providence Friars the following season.

Youngstown is owned by the owners of Phantom Fireworks, the largest fireworks manufacturer in the United States. Even though they're losing their top scorer, the fireworks will be lighting up the arena next season once Riley Duran takes the ice.

Check out more content from The Junior Hockey Podcast for your junior hockey news. Each one of their podcast episodes tackles a different question from around the junior hockey leagues. Follow me on Twitter @Nwinansw along with @TJHP as well.

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