Connect with us

Flyers Prospects

Flyers’ Top Defense Prospect Joins AHL Affiliate



Hunter McDonald
Hunter McDonald played 58 NCAA games with Northeastern in the last two seasons. (Photo: Northeastern)

The Philadelphia Flyers are finally getting some sort of defense reinforcements… just not the kind you were probably hoping for.

According to the AHL transactions page, Northeastern University defenseman and former Flyers sixth-round pick Hunter McDonald has joined the Lehigh Valley Phantoms of the AHL on a professional tryout. McDonald has not signed an entry-level contract with the Flyers yet.

In corresponding transactions, forwards Jacques Bouquot and Tyler Gratton were released from their professional tryouts, and defenseman Darren Brady was reassigned to the Reading Royals on loan (ECHL).

McDonald is the same defense prospect that Keith Jones had previously claimed would be a “beast” for the Flyers on the PHLY Flyers podcast. Suffice to say, getting an early look at McDonald in professional action will be exciting for the Flyers and their front office.

You can watch the full episode here.

If or when the 21-year-old plays, he’ll feature alongside the likes of Emil Andrae, Helge Grans, and possibly Adam Ginning or Ronnie Attard.

Pivoting towards the long-term picture, McDonald projects to be a player who will be known more for his defense rather than his offense. In 58 games with Northeastern, McDonald only managed to score two goals, 18 assists, and 20 points.

The 6-foot-4 defenseman is more physical and can use his long reach to disrupt zone entries and break up passes, but hasn’t scored more than five goals in a season since he was in high school six years ago.

That said, we can deduct from this what kind of “beast” Jones and the Flyers are expecting McDonald to be for them. Ginning is the only other notable prospect the Flyers have in this mold; Rasmus Ristolainen has played this role for Philadelphia this season, but his enigmatic upper-body injury has kept him out of action since early February.

In the coming weeks, we’ll keep an eye out for McDonald’s professional debut for the Phantoms.

For more Flyers news and up-to-date coverage, visit Philly Hockey Now and like our Facebook page.
Follow us on 𝕏:

Get PhHN in Your Inbox

Enter your email address to get all of our posts sent directly to your inbox.

Copyright © 2023 National Hockey Now and Philadelphia Hockey Now. In no way affiliated with the Philadelphia Flyers or the National Hockey League.