2020 OHL Draft Ranking: Final Top-250 Canadians

With the 2020 OHL Draft just one week away, it’s time for our ultimate 2020 OHL Draft Ranking: Final Top-250 Canadians.

In what turned out to be an unfortunately unique ending to the 2019-20 season, players, family members, and fans alike were robbed of the conclusive finale to their minor hockey careers when the 2020 OHL Cup was forced to be cancelled due the COVID-19 Pandemic.

In any case, exciting times lay ahead for these prospects with extraordinarily bright futures in the hockey world. If there was any source of relief surrounding the situation in terms of the 2004-born class of OHL prospects, it is that the 2020 OHL Draft will go ahead as scheduled, on April 4th, 2020 at 9:00AM, thanks to the event being hosted online.

One important note to add is the recent news of the #1 ranked Adam Fantilli’s commitment to the USHL’s Chicago Steel for the 2020-21 season. TSN’s Bob McKenzie has reported that Fantilli has advised all OHL teams that he will not be playing in the OHL net season, regardless of his draft-day destination.

Although we missed out on a final chance to view these players in a high-pressure situation which is the OHL Cup, we nonetheless move forward with our final 2020 OHL Draft Ranking. This edition features the top-250 Canadian prospects eligible for this year’s OHL Priority Selection. However, he remains eligible for the draft and will thus be included in the final 2020 OHL Draft ranking.

Final Top-250 Canadians

With that said, here are the top-250 Ontario-born prospects eligible for the 2020 OHL Draft. Overall, this year’s draft features a bundle of ambiguity within spots 4-20, before a noticeable drop off into the next tier. The crop of top prospects is extremely tight, with a great sense of parity within their rankings. Players ranked between the second and third rounds remain relatively interchangeable as well, with the second tier of prospects slotted between spots 21-50. From there, there is another drop off in terms of talent and potential to the third tier of prospects ranked from 51-100. The rest of the way certainly has some players with a shot of being dubbed a “diamond in the rough” down the line, but for now they project as longer-term prospects for OHL teams.

Please note: This is an OHL Draft Ranking and is in no way a prediction of when players will be selected. It is not a mock draft.

Rank Player Position Team
1 Adam Fantilli C Kimball Union Academy
2 Ty Nelson D Toronto Jr. Canadiens
3 Pano Fimis C Toronto Jr. Canadiens
4 Zak Lavoie C Toronto Nationals
5 David Goyette C South Kent Academy
6 Dalyn Wakely C Quinte Red Devils
7 Kocha Delic C Toronto Titans
8 Paul Ludwinski C Toronto Marlboros
9 Donovan McCoy D Quinte Red Devils
10 Isaiah George D Toronto Marlboros
11 Sam Alfano RW Southern Tier Admirals
12 Cedrick Guindon C Rockland Nationals
13 Bryce McConnell-Barker C London Jr. Knights
14 Carson Christy C Oshawa Jr. Generals
15 Hunter Haight C Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs
16 Matthew Poitras LW Whitby Wildcats
17 Andrew LeBlanc C Southern Tier Admirals
18 Alec Leonard D Mississauga Reps
19 Nicholas Moldenhauer RW Toronto Titans
20 Ryan McGuire LW Burlington Eagles
21 Justin DeZoete LW Hamilton Huskies
22 Matthew Jovanovic D Toronto Marlboros
23 Aaron Brown D Quinte Red Devils
24 Aidan Castle RW Toronto Jr. Canadiens
25 Jackson Edward D York Simcoe Express
26 Cooper Matthews LW Quinte Red Devils
27 Jonathan Melee LW Rockland Nationals
28 Thomas Sirman D Toronto Jr. Canadiens
29 Aaron Andrade RW Toronto Titans
30 Shawn Ramsay D Toronto Nationals
31 Nolan Collins D Whitby Wildcats
32 George Fegaras D Richmond Hill Coyotes
33 Beau Jelsma C Brantford 99ers
34 Noah Van Vliet D Toronto Jr. Canadiens
35 Ben Bujold C Kanata Lasers
36 Hayden Simpson C Toronto Titans
37 Michael Buchinger D Toronto Jr. Canadiens
38 Joshua Hoover D Lambton Jr. Sting
39 Patrick Thomas C Hamilton Huskies
40 Devin Mauro C Soo Greyhounds
41 Brice Cooke RW Toronto Jr. Canadiens
42 Brody Crane* C Buffalo Jr. Sabres 16U
43 Jake Karabela C Guelph Gryphons
44 Lorenzo Bonaiuto LW Toronto Marlboros
45 Ethan Best D Toronto Jr. Canadiens
46 Trent Swick RW Southern Tier Admirals
47 Brady Stonehouse LW Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs
48 Connor Toms D Soo Greyhounds
49 Rodion Tatarenko C Toronto Red Wings
50 Jorian Donovan D Kanata Lasers
51 Luca D’Amato D Vaughan Kings
52 Nicholas De Angelis D Mississauga Sens
53 Owen Van Steensel LW Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs
54 Jack Piper RW York Simcoe Express
55 Liam Eveleigh D Waterloo Wolves
56 Will Gerrior LW Ottawa Jr. Senators
57 Wilson Farrow D Toronto Nationals
58 Michael Podolioukh LW Toronto Jr. Canadiens
59 Jake Sederoff LW Toronto Titans
60 Owen Mehlenbacher C Buffalo Jr. Sabres 15U
61 Madden Steen D Guelph Gryphons
62 Nathan Poole C Oshawa Jr. Generals
63 Julian Fantino RW Richmond Hill Coyotes
64 Jacob LeBlanc D Southern Tier Admirals
65 Ryan Cartwright D Toronto Nationals
66 Wyatt Adkins D Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs
67 Owen Beck RW Quinte Red Devils
68 Julian Facchinelli C Markham Majors
69 Kyan Haldenby LW Toronto Jr. Canadiens
70 Austin Harper C Lambton Jr. Sting
71 Harrison Ballard C York Simcoe Express
72 Aidan Puley LW Toronto Jr. Canadiens
73 Brock Jones C Buffalo Regals
74 Matthew Morden D Toronto Titans
75 Koen Taves D Sun County Panthers
76 Joshua Beiles LW Mississauga Reps
77 Ryder McIntyre C Ajax Pickering Raiders
78 Max Seguin LW Toronto Nationals
79 Jordan Karafile C Toronto Nationals
80 Emerson Miller D Toronto Titans
81 Luke Gualtieri D Southern Tier Admirals
82 Dylan Roobrocek C London Jr. Knights
83 Steve Leskovar D Cambridge Hawks
84 Colton Smith RW Kanata Lasers
85 Seth Kirou LW Don Mills Flyers
86 Jack Oldman RW Mississauga Reps
87 Nicholas Messina C Vaughan Kings
88 Kai Dunits C Kemptville 73’s
89 Evan Klein C Waterloo Wolves
90 Taos Jordan D Whitby Wildcats
91 Joshua Vogelsburg LW Mississauga Reps
92 Carter Coombs C Huron Perth Lakers
93 Sett Ursomarzo RW Toronto Nationals
94 Noah Richard LW Quinte Red Devils
95 Matthew Mayich D Hamilton Huskies
96 Tobias Iantorno LW Toronto Nationals
97 Tnias Mathurin D Ajax Pickering Raiders
98 Kalen Peterson RW Toronto Marlboros
99 Anthony Piccininno LW Toronto Titans
100 Cole Bowditch D Kanata Lasers
101 Tai York C Niagara North Stars
102 Zennon Edwards RW Whitby Wildcats
103 Zaccharya Wisdom LW Mississauga Sens
104 Joseph Ianniello D Vaughan Kings
105 Jacob Lesser C Smiths Falls Bears
106 Jackson Stewart LW Quinte Red Devils
107 Dawson Hettiarachchi C Whitby Wildcats
108 Zander Veccia RW Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs
109 Caeden Carlisle D Mississauga Sens
110 Ben Armstrong C Vaughan Kings
111 Lleyton McLean LW Toronto Jr. Canadiens
112 Nicola LaForge C North Bay Trappers
113 Brett Henderson LW Oakville Rangers
114 Ryland Landon D Pembroke Lumber Kings
115 Dawson Lukey LW Southern Tier Admirals
116 Igor Zborovskiy LW Toronto Red Wings
117 Joseph Muldowney C Buffalo Regals
118 Vincenzo Baiocchi RW Toronto Marlboros
119 Gavin Bryant LW Brantford 99ers
120 Brandon Balazs RW Brantford 99ers
121 Jackson Ebbott RW Don Mills Flyers
122 Jax Bellwood LW Barrie Jr. Colts
123 Andrew Chang LW Mississauga Sens
124 Cedricson Okitundu D Waterloo Wolves
125 Brayden Bowen C Cornwall Colts
126 Lucas Buzziol C Vaughan Kings
127 Alex Campbell RW Mississauga Rebels
128 Maddox Amaral LW Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs
129 Cory Jewitt LW Huron Perth Lakers
130 Nicholas Colangelo C Ajax Pickering Raiders
131 Brett Richardson C North Bay Trappers
132 Luke Devlin LW Toronto Marlboros
133 Luke Torrance LW Oshawa Jr. Generals
134 Kailin Chen RW Toronto Marlboros
135 Samuel Assinewai LW Oakland Jr. Grizzlies 15U
136 Mitchell Davies LW Clarington Toros
137 Lee Parks RW Rockland Nationals
138 Alexander Dubajic LW Toronto Titans
139 Alexander Papaspyropoulos C North York Rangers
140 Gavin Grundner LW Windsor Jr. Spitfires
141 Nate Dowling C Windsor Jr. Spitfires
142 Ryan Russell LW Barrie Jr. Colts
143 Brodie McLeod D Thunder Bay Kings
144 Nathaniel Davis D Toronto Titans
145 Eli Sebastian RW Toronto Marlboros
146 Kieran Chung D CIHA White
147 Ethan Whitcomb RW Niagara North Stars
148 Mick Thompson C
North Jersey Avalanche 16U
149 Joshua Kudo LW Oakville Rangers
150 Cam Lowe C Southern Tier Admirals
151 Callum Arnott LW Toronto Marlboros
152 Patrick Wrzesinski D Toronto Titans
153 Chase Lefebvre D North Bay Trappers
154 Ty Petrou C Ajax Pickering Raiders
155 Cristobal Tola LW Hamilton Huskies
156 Christian Berini C Navan Grads
157 Julian Bianconi C Don Mills Flyers
158 Jesse Aitken C Vaughan Kings
159 Zachary Wigle LW Oakville Rangers
160 Derek Smyth D Niagara North Stars
161 Matthew Donnison D Southern Tier Admirals
162 Ben Bressette LW Don Mills Flyers
163 Mason Chen D Toronto Titans
164 Rhett Palmer RW Kemptville 73’s
165 Connor Koropatnicki RW Hamilton Huskies
166 Lucas Carson RW Waterloo Wolves
167 Grayson Ebrahim RW Kington Jr. Gaels
168 Jesse Coppola LW Vaughan Kings
169 Charlie Gollob LW Markham Majors
170 Luke Fritz RW Huron Perth Lakers
171 Coulson Pitre C Richmond Hill Coyotes
172 Jacob Julien LW Chatham-Kent Cyclones
173 Bryan Jones C Kemptville 73’s
174 Kevin Fitzgerald D Kington Jr. Gaels
175 Tanner Ryan RW York Simcoe Express
176 Matthew Jennings RW Markham Majors
177 Mason Chitaroni D Soo Greyhounds
178 Kyle Adamo RW Buffalo Regals
179 Danny Scott D Huron Perth Lakers
180 Ryan Struthers C Oakville Rangers
181 Cuan Doig LW Toronto Titans
182 Ethan Siebert D Kemptville 73’s
183 Andy Reist C Waterloo Wolves
184 Wyatt Gibson C Niagara North Stars
185 Liam Filip RW Vaughan Kings
186 Luke Bibby LW Brantford 99ers
187 Landon Hookey C Lambton Jr. Sting
188 Jace Letourneau LW Pembroke Lumber Kings
189 Ryan Vannetten D Brantford 99ers
190 Jack Ryan C Peterborough Petes
191 Peter Kioussis RW Mississauga Reps
192 Adam Barone D Soo Greyhounds
193 Corbin Roach RW Quinte Red Devils
194 Luke Johnston LW Guelph Gryphons
195 Owen Allard C Kanata Lasers
196 Lucas Littlejohn D Clarington Toros
197 Rennick Villaflor D Hamilton Huskies
198 William Haines LW York Simcoe Express
199 Adrian Misaljevic LW Mississauga Rebels
200 Michael DiSanto RW Markham Majors
201 Jack Matsukubo LW Nepean Raiders
202 William Moore D Oshawa Jr. Generals
203 Benjamin Campeau C Kington Jr. Gaels
204 Gregory Harley D Vaughan Kings
205 Cameron Shanks RW Sudbury Wolves
206 Jared Coccimiglio C Richmond Hill Coyotes
207 Raine Hodge LW Hamilton Jr. Bulldogs
208 Nicholas Yearwood RW North York Rangers
209 William Tario D Nepean Raiders
210 Daniel Clark C Peterborough Petes
211 Owen Kerr RW Cambridge Hawks
212 Antonino Pugliese RW Hamilton Huskies
213 Charlie Fink LW Mississauga Sens
214 Angus Duchene C Pembroke Lumber Kings
215 Brendan Gouin LW Windsor Jr. Spitfires
216 Lachlan Wells C Markham Waxers
217 Dylan Dupuis LW Lambton Jr. Sting
218 Deandres De Jesus LW Markham Majors
219 Mathieu Fehr C Hawkesbury Hawks
220 Adrian Rebelo LW Hamilton Jr. Bulldogs
221 Noah Morneau C Windsor Jr. Spitfires
222 David Brandes D Toronto Red Wings
223 Yianni Kaidonis LW Halton Hurricanes
224 Wylie Birkett LW York Simcoe Express
225 Wylie Dixon LW Smiths Falls Bears
226 Calem Mangone RW Soo Greyhounds
227 Jack Kedwell D Mississauga Rebels
228 Owen Sculthorp LW York Simcoe Express
229 Nicholas Fielding Roode RW Peterborough Petes
230 Jack Pineau C Thunder Bay Kings
231 Ethan Lewis LW Guelph Gryphons
232 Benjamin Oliver C Kitchener Jr. Rangers
233 Kyle Dagg C Smiths Falls Bears
234 Ryan Cooper LW Huron Perth Lakers
235 Cole Semeniuk D Mississauga Reps
236 Nolan Burnside RW London Jr. Knights
237 Reid Greer RW Kanata Lasers
238 Colby Cross LW Hamilton Jr. Bulldogs
239 Dallas Landriault RW North Bay Trappers
240 Drew Durzi D Toronto Nationals
241 Will Fletcher LW Burlington Eagles
242 Roenick Jodoin C Cornwall Colts
243 Alessandro Petreccia D Don Mills Flyers
244 Kyle Caron C Cambridge Hawks
245 Connor Thomson-Dick D Niagara North Stars
246 Nate Tivey D Hamilton Jr. Bulldogs
247 Josh Lehto LW Thunder Bay Kings
248 Jake Fullerton D North Bay Trappers
249 Mitchel Ferras RW Brantford 99ers
250 Luke Sherk RW Sun County Panthers

* Denotes the player is currently committed to an NCAA program.

2020 OHL Draft Ranking: December’s Top-100

Heading into the final month of 2019, it’s clear that American eligible prospects are dominating the class. Check out our 2020 OHL Draft Ranking: December’s Top-100.

Now into the final month of 2019, Ontario’s Minor Midget leagues are crossing the halfway point of their respective regular seasons, and have now competed in five of the season’s major tournaments.

The month of November offered two more major showcases to take in, and offered yet another look into the depth and talent of this year’s OHL Priority Selection. A trend with this year’s OHL Draft class has been the emergence of an impressively strong American group, who have been giving Ontario teams a run for their money at each of the major tournaments thus far.

November Recap

  • 2019 OHL Battle of the Border

In a battle between some of USA’s and Ontario’s top Minor Midget teams, Detroit Honeybaked and the Chicago Mission were the lone undefeated teams through a series of games without the usual tournament playoff breakdown. In the end, it was the United States who came away victorious over Ontario by a combined points score of 34-17.

The top scorers included Max Namestnikov (5-3–8) and Frank Nazar (3-5–8), each of Detroit Honeybaked, followed behind by teammate Cole Spicer (5-1-6) and the Chicago Mission’s Carson Walters (3-3-6).

  • 2019 Whitby Silver Stick

In one of the season’s premier tournament’s, it was much of the same story, with teams from the USA having a run of success once again. Through the round robin, only Detroit Honeybaked, Detroit Compuware, and the Buffalo Jr. Sabres came away with perfect 4-0-0 records. Those same three teams remained present in the semi-finals, joined by the Quinte Red Devils.

In the final, Honeybaked had their way once again, rolling over Compuware to a 7-0 victory. In all, Honeybaked rolled to a combined 7-0-0 record with 43 goals for and just 8 goal against.

The top three offensive leaders were once again from Honeybaked, with Nazar (8-7-15), Namestnikov (6-7-13) and Van Sickle (6-6-12) leading the charge. All top-10 scorers were from American teams, while Sam Alfano (5-4-9) of the Southern Tier Admirals was the leading Canadian scorer.

  • League Action

In the GTHL, the Jr. Canadiens (15-1-1) have slightly widened the gap between themselves and the competition. The Nationals (14-3-3) and Marlboros (13-3-3) remain in a tight battle for the second seed, with the Titans (11-5-3) and Reps (11-6-2) not far behind.

The ETA continues to be paced by the front-running Quinte Red Devils (17-2-2) and York Simcoe Express (17-3-3), but a couple dark horses in the Whitby Wildcats (11-4-3) and Richmond Hill Coyotes (10-4-6) are holding their own as well.

In the SCTA, the Southern Tier Admirals (16-1-1) continue to hold the reigns, but two red-hot teams in the Niagara North Stars (11-2-5) and Oakville Rangers (10-6-3) remain serious contenders as well, while the Burlington Eagles (12-9-2) hit a rough patch in November.

The battle at the top of the Alliance remains as tight as ever, with both the Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs (15-0-6) and Waterloo Wolves (17-2-3) remaining as promising as ever. With that said, the Hamilton Huskies (16-4-2) were the league’s hottest team in November and are proving that they won’t go down without a fight.

3 Players to Watch

By now, Ty Nelson’s immense skill and on-ice presence are recognized all across the province. Wearing an “A” for Ontario’s top-ranked Minor Midget team, the Toronto Jr. Canadiens, Nelson is a natural leader in and off the ice, and consistently has a tremendous influence on the outcome of JRC games.

Patrolling the blue line with poise and confidence, Nelson is a constant difference-maker at both ends of the ice. A fluid skater, he isn’t afraid to rush the puck through the neutral zone himself, and has the speed necessary to get back into position on the defensive side of the play.

Maintaining a low center of gravity allows Nelson to play a much stronger game than one would expect given his physical size. He’s very hard to knock off of the puck, and is equally effective when erasing opponents into the boards. Further, Nelson has shown the ability to be a quick and creative playmaker in the offensive zone too, establishing an elite two-way game.

Despite not suiting up for one of Ontario’s top teams, Bryce McConnell-Barker hasn’t let that slow down his chase to be a first round pick at the 2020 OHL Draft. Pacing the London Jr. Knights offence, McConnell-Barker has scored nearly triple the goals of any of his teammates, with an astounding 26 goals in just 24 games.

Leading the Alliance in both goals and points, McConnell-Barker has proven to be a dynamic offensive force in all situations, and has continued to build on his arsenal of tools. Boasting impressive sense of the ice and a wicked shot, McConnell-Barker can burn opponents with his combination of shifty skating, creative hands, and nose for the net.

Using a strong stride and a balanced lower-body, McConnell-Barker protects the puck with ease by using his frame to shield opponents from the puck and utilizes a long reach to keep the puck out away from opponent’s stick reach. He displays a solid net drive and isn’t afraid to go into the tough areas in order to score the dirty goals.

  • Carson Christy

Carson Christy has quickly emerged as one of the premier prospects from the ETA, currently leading the league in both goals and points, including an eye-popping 26 goals in just 21 games. Although the Oshawa Jr. Generals have been unable to translate their dynamic offence into wins, sitting comfortably in the fifth seed, Christy has been a bright spot each and every night.

Featuring an electric release and pin-point accuracy, Christy is able to turn the momentum of a game with one flick of the wrist. Although not the smoothest skater out there, Christy can utilize his size and strength to lug the puck through the neutral zone and also showcases quick and creative hands which allow him to maneuver through traffic.

Christy also displays good instincts of the ice and is able to read the play one step ahead of his competition. One of the province’s elite goal scorers, it will be incredibly hard for OHL teams to pass up on Christy in the mid-late first round of the 2020 OHL Draft.

December’s Top-100

Without further ado, here are the top-100 prospects for the 2020 OHL Draft as of December. One trend that has developed so far this year is the emergence of a strong draft class from the U.S., with several first-round talents available. Whether they choose to play in the OHL or not will have huge impacts on how the draft unfolds come April. As the 2019-20 season progresses, we’ll continue to hyperlink personal player profiles to our monthly rankings, so be sure to follow along as the campaign unwinds.

Rank Player Position Team
1 Adam Fantilli C
Kimball Union Academy (Prep)
2 Rutger McGroarty* C
Oakland Jr. Grizzlies (HPHL)
3 Ty Nelson D
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
4 David Goyette C
Selects Hockey Academy 15U (Prep)
5 Lane Hutson* D
North Jersey Avalanche U16 (T1EHL)
6 Kocha Delic C
Toronto Titans (GTHL)
7 Pano Fimis C
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
8 Seamus Casey* D
Florida Alliance U16 (NAPHL)
9 Devin Kaplan* C
North Jersey Avalanche U16 (T1EHL)
10 Paul Ludwinski C
Toronto Marlboros (GTHL)
11 Hunter Brzustewicz* D
Oakland Jr. Grizzlies (HPHL)
12 Dalyn Wakely C
Quinte Red Devils (ETA)
13 Tyler Duke* D
Detroit Compuware U16 (T1EHL)
14 Isaiah George D
Toronto Marlboros (GTHL)
15 Cutter Gauthier C
Detroit Compuware U16 (T1EHL)
16 Frank Nazar* C
Honeybaked U15 (HPHL)
17 Cedrick Guindon C
Rockland Nationals (HEO)
18 Bryce McConnell-Barker C
London Jr. Knights (Alliance)
19 Max Namestnikov LW
Honeybaked U15 (HPHL)
20 Carson Christy C
Oshawa Jr. Generals (ETA)
21 Isaac Howard* C
Shattuck St. Mary’s U16
22 Sam Alfano RW
Southern Tier Admirals (SCTA)
23 Evan Konyen C
Pittsburgh Penguins Elite (T1EHL)
24 Aidan Castle RW
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
25 Donovan McCoy D
Quinte Red Devils (ETA)
26 Andrew LeBlanc C
Southern Tier Admirals (SCTA)
27 Zak Lavoie C
Toronto Young Nationals (GTHL)
28 Devin Mauro C
Soo Greyhounds (GNML)
29 Vinny Borgesi D
Selects Hockey Academy 15U (Prep)
30 Alec Leonard D
Mississauga Reps (GTHL)
31 Gavin Brindley LW
Florida Alliance U16 (NAPHL)
32 Hunter Haight C
Elgin Middlesex Chiefs (Alliance)
33 Matthew Poitras LW
Whitby Wildcats (ETA)
34 Thomas Sirman D
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
35 Owen Van Steensel LW
Elgin Middlesex Chiefs (Alliance)
36 Tai York C
Niagara North Stars (SCTA)
37 Nicholas Moldenhauer RW
Toronto Titans (GTHL)
38 Benjamin Bujold C
Kanata Lasers (HEO)
39 Cameron Van Sickle LW
Honeybaked U15 (HPHL)
40 Noah Van Vliet D
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
41 Jonathan Melee C/LW
Rockland Nationals (HEO)
42 Nathan Poole C
Oshawa Jr. Generals (ETA)
43 Michael Buchinger D
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
44 Mick Thompson C
North Jersey Avalanche U16 (T1EHL)
45 Jackson Edward D
York Simcoe Express (ETA)
46 Lorenzo Bonaiuto LW
Toronto Marlboros (GTHL)
47 Zach Filak* C
Detroit Compuware U16 (T1EHL)
48 Shawn Ramsey D
Toronto Young Nationals (GTHL)
49 Joshua Hoover D
Lambton Jr. Sting (Alliance)
50 Kyan Haldenby LW
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
51 Matthew Johanovic D
Toronto Marlboros (GTHL)
52 Brody Crane* C
Buffalo Jr. Sabres 16U
53 George Fegaras D
Richmond Hill Coyotes (ETA)
54 Jack Piper RW
York Simcoe Express (ETA)
55 Ryan McGuire LW
Burlington Eagles (SCTA)
56 Hayden Simpson C
Toronto Titans (GTHL)
57 Aidan Puley LW
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
58 Chase Pietila D
Honeybaked U15 (HPHL)
59 Aaron Brown D
Quinte Red Devils (ETA)
60 Evan Klein C
Waterloo Wolves (Alliance)
61 Justin Varner RW
Honeybaked U15 (HPHL)
62 Nicholas De Angelis D
Mississauga Senators (GTHL)
63 Matthew DiMarsico RW
Pittsburgh Penguins Elite (T1EHL)
64 Chase Lefebvre D
North Bay Trappers (GNML)
65 Cole Spicer RW
Honeybaked U15 (HPHL)
66 Aaron Andrade RW
Toronto Titans (GTHL)
67 Trent Swick RW
Southern Tier Admirals (SCTA)
68 Jacob Lesser LW
Smiths Falls Bears (HEO)
69 Chris Able D
Chicago Mission U15 (HPHL)
70 Eli Sebastian RW
Toronto Marlboros (GTHL)
71 Lleyton McLean C
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
72 Liam Eveleigh D
Waterloo Wolves (Alliance)
73 Harrison Ballard C
York Simcoe Express (ETA)
74 Max Seguin LW
Toronto Young Nationals (GTHL)
75 Justin DeZoete C
Hamilton Huskies (Alliance)
76 Jordan Karafile C
Toronto Young Nationals (GTHL)
77 Ethan Best D
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
78 Jake Manfre C
Long Island Gulls U15 (AYHL)
79 Jake Sederoff LW
Toronto Titans (GTHL)
80 Michael Podolioukh RW
Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
81 Cooper Matthews LW
York Simcoe Express (ETA)
82 Madden Steen D
Guelph Jr. Gryphons (SCTA)
83 Nathan Lewis RW
Oakland Jr. Grizzlies (HPHL)
84 Anthony Piccininno C
Toronto Titans (GTHL)
85 Cole Bianchin LW
Pittsburgh Penguins Elite (T1EHL)
86 Wilson Farrow D
Toronto Young Nationals (GTHL)
87 Lane Hinkley D
Toronto Marlboros (GTHL)
88 Brady Stonehouse LW
Elgin Middlesex Chiefs (Alliance)
89 Owen Mehlenbacher C
Buffalo Jr. Sabres U15
90 Kalen Peterson RW
Toronto Marlboros (GTHL)
91 Noah Richard LW
Quinte Red Devils (ETA)
92 Patrick Thomas C
Hamilton Huskies (Alliance)
93 Sett Ursomarzo RW
Toronto Young Nationals (GTHL)
94 Joshua Vogelsburg C
Mississauga Reps (GTHL)
95 Zander Veccia RW
Elgin Middlesex Chiefs (Alliance)
96 Owen Beck RW
Quinte Red Devils (ETA)
97 Jorian Donovan D
Kanata Lasers (HEO)
98 Jake Karabela C
Guelph Jr. Gryphons (SCTA)
99 Nolan Collins D
Whitby Wildcats (ETA)
100 Cédricson Okitundu D
Waterloo Wolves (Alliance)

2019 Toronto Titans Early Bird: Top-10 Performers

Check out the Top-10 Performers from the 2019 Toronto Titans Early Bird Tournament. The tournament officially kicked off the Minor midget season and provided an early glimpse into the 2020 OHL Draft class.

In the blink of an eye, the 12th Annual Toronto Titans Early Bird Prospect Tournament has come and gone, officially opening the 2019-20 Minor Midget season and providing an early glimpse into the 2020 OHL Priority Selection.

In what was a truly entertaining week of hockey, the 53 teams involved in the tournament gave fans and families alike a look into the special talent available in the 2004-born OHL Draft class.

Tournament Recap

Following a high-paced and high-scoring Round Robin portion of the tournament, six teams entered the elongation round with perfect 4-0-0 records; the Toronto Jr. Canadiens, Pittsburgh Penguins Elite, Quinte Red Devils, Toronto Titans, Toronto Nationals, and Ajax-Pickering Raiders.

The Round of 16 commenced on Saturday night and provided some nail-biting games, as well as a couple of major upsets. The undefeated Red Devils were downed by the Mississauga in a crazy and back-and-forth contest that finished 7-6. The Raiders also drew a tough draw, and eventually bowed out in a tight game to the Toronto Marlboros, 2-0.

Early Sunday morning, the Quarter-Finals took place, with six of the eight teams coming from the GTHL. In the end, the Titans, Jr. Canadiens, Mississauga Reps, and Nationals came away victorious, settling up an all-GTHL Semi-Final.

In a battle of two high-octane offences, the Jr. Canadiens came away with the win over the Titans by a final of 5-3. Meanwhile, in a much more defence-oriented matchup, the Nationals continued to roll in a 2-0 victory over the upstart Reps.

That set up a Final between the Jr. Canadiens and the Nationals. JRC came out strong to start the game and were rewarded with a quick 2-0 lead in the first period, in the back of two power play goals. The Nats would respond, but entered the first intermission down 2-1.

Following a tight checking second period, the Nats were able to claw back and tie the game at two. Later, with four minutes remaining in the third, Wilson Farrow was able to sneak a shot by and give the Nats a late, 3-2 lead. Two empty-net goals later, and the Toronto Nationals found themselves as the 2019 Titans Early Bird Champions.

Top-10 Performers:

As mentioned, the tournament provided an outlet for numerous players to make a name for themselves heading into their OHL Draft year.

While the expected stars held their own and were consistently impressive, many prospects were able to showcase their talents and drive their name into the conversation of the 2020 OHL Draft’s top prospects.

1: Aidan Castle – Right Wing – Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)

Our selection for the 2019 Titans Early Bird Tournament MVP, Aidan Castle wrapped up the tournament ranking second in goals, with nine, and first in points, with 18. Castle was as consistent as can be through the Jr. Canadiens eight games, tallying at least one point in each and every contest, leading the team all the way to the Final.

Featuring a feisty and competitive nature, Castle is a hound on the puck and leads by example with a consistent effort level at both ends of the ice. With a low, strong center of gravity, Castle can be very difficult to knock off of the puck, which poses problems for opponents as he causes havoc on the cycle down low. From there, he creates scoring chances by jumping off of the half wall either with puck possession or to slip behind defenders to make himself a viable passing option. Castle can also be a noticeable physical presence on the forecheck, effectively using his strength to separate opponents from the puck and force turnovers.

2: Ty Nelson – Defence – Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)

Ty Nelson quickly proved his upside as a two-way defender at this year’s Toronto Titans Early Bird, adding four goals and nine assists in the tournament, ranking fourth overall with 13 points, as the Jr. Canadiens went on to a second place finish. This wasn’t Nelson’s first rodeo at the Titans Early Bird either, as the blue-chip prospect participated in last year’s tournament as a member of the ’03 Jr. Canadiens.

Nelson is regarded as one of the top defence prospects for the 2020 OHL Draft, showcasing elite skating skills and a tremendous sense of the ice, he can truly be an impact player at both ends of the rink. Nelson showed an innate ability to escape pressure with the puck on his stick, and excelled in transitioning the play up ice through a multitude of options. He also patrols the blue line with poise and confidence, and distributes the puck laterally on the power play. As well, he likes to use a quick snap shot from the point, looking for seams between traffic to catch goaltenders off-guard.

3: Zak Lavoie – Center – Toronto Nationals (GTHL)

A member of the ’04 Jr. Canadiens in bantam, Zak Lavoie took his talents to the Toronto Nationals organization for the minor midget season in hopes of being the player his team can lean on. With so much talent on JRC, both returning and incoming, Lavoie opted to search for the spotlight, and potentially create a dark-horse team in the GTHL. If the Titans Early Bird was any indication, he may have done just that.

Lavoie was one of the most dynamic forwards in the tournament from start to finish, racking up 10 goals and one assist in the tournament, leading the way in goals, as the Nats fought their way to a surprising Championship. As indicated by his goal total, Lavoie is a natural scorer with a wicked release and pin-point accuracy. He reads the ice really well in the offensive zone, and is always moving his feet in order to slip into open ice and make himself a passing option. He’s got quick and creative hands as well, making himself dangerous in tight space.

4: Nicholas Moldenhauer – Right Wing – Toronto Titans (GTHL)

After taking home the OHF All-Ontario Bantam Championships, expectations are high for the Toronto Titans entering the 2019-20 season. One player who will be leaned on heavily to drive the team’s offence is Nicholas Moldenhauer, and he did just that at the Titans Early Bird. Finishing the tournament with six goals and eight assists, to rank third overall with 14 points, Moldenhauer was a key component on the Titans run to the Semi-Finals.

Moldenhauer combines speed, skill, and awareness to consistently be one of the most dangerous players on the ice. He always has his head up and is constantly reading developing plays for opportunities to force turnovers or create odd-man rushes. With quick hands and a powerful stride, Moldenhauer is especially dangerous on the rush and off of the half-wall. With a strong surrounding cast, Moldenhauer should be one of the top offensive contributors all year long.

5: Pano Fimis – Center – Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)

More of an under-the-radar forward for the star-studded Jr. Canadiens, Pano Fimis utilizes the Titan Early Bird Tournament to create a name for himself heading into the regular season. Despite the bigger names surrounding him, Fimis centred the most productive line in the tournament and played a responsible 200-foot game to boot. In the end, Fimis racked up six goals and 11 assists to finish second in tournament scoring with 17 points.

An intelligent, two-way center with lots of offensive upside, Fimis proved his value as a player who can be leaned on in any situation, at both ends of the ice. Reading the ice well, he is an effective playmaker who can create time and space for his teammates by slowing the game down and drawing defenders towards him. He also has a deceptive release and is able to get pucks on and off his blade in an instant to catch goaltenders off guard.

6: Adam Fantilli – Center – Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)

The projected 1st overall pick for the 2020 OHL Draft, Adam Fantilli has entered the 2019-20 campaign with lofty expectations surrounding his name. After shredding minor midget as an under ager in 2018-19, Fantilli took his talents back to JRC after one year with the Toronto Red Wings. After a relatively slow start, Fantilli wrapped up the tournament with seven goals and four assists, finishing tied for fifth in tournament scoring.

Adam Fantilli has so many strengths to his game that it’s tough to sum them up concisely. With an electric first three steps, Fantilli has elite speed through the middle of the ice. Despite a December birth-date, he is clearly stronger than his opposition, who bounce off when trying to separate Fantilli from the puck. With a dynamic wrist shot, he can pick corners from short angles or simply blow pucks past opposing goaltenders. With a battery that doesn’t die, Fantilli is the definition of an offensive spark-plug.

7: Kyle Downey – Goaltender – Toronto Nationals (GTHL)

A huge reason for the Nats surge to the Titans Early Bird Championship was defence and goaltending, as the team allowed a combined eight goals across eight games of tournament action. Kyle Downey, along with his partner Nick Tsatsanis, were the last line of defence for the Nats, and were arguably the main reason behind the team’s success.

Downey came up huge when the games counted the most, showcasing an elite level of confidence and focus between the pipes. After falling behind 2-0 in the Championship game against the Jr. Canadiens, Downey didn’t blink, holding down the fort and giving the Nats a shot at a memorable comeback. Downey put his athleticism and lateral movement on display, making a number of highlight reel stops. With great size and positioning to boot, Downey proved his ability to single-handedly take over the course of a game.

8: Donovan McCoy – Defence – Quinte Red Devils (ETA)

One of the favourites for this tournament after capturing the OMHA Championships in 2018-19, the Quinte Red Devils bowed out earlier than they would’ve liked in the Round of 16. While the offence wasn’t up to it’s usual pace, Donovan McCoy was a consistent standout on the back-end. With tremendous speed and instincts through the neutral zone, McCoy was consistently able to jump into the rush to create offence.

Sporting solid size and some impressive strength, McCoy proved too much to handle for his opponents. While he can lock things down in his own end with an effective stick and body positioning, McCoy really takes over the game in the transition aspect. He can dish out three-line passes or skate the puck end-to-end himself. In the offensive zone, McCoy showed smart shot selection from the point, along with the skill to pinch in and drive the net as well.

9: Julian Facchinelli – Center – Markham Majors (GTHL)

Although the final result may not have been what the Markham Majors had drawn up, they showed some serious fight in earning a 2-2-0 round robin record. Leading the charge for the Majors was standout, Julian Facchinelli, who tallied an impressive eight goals in just four games to lead the tournament in goals through the round robin.

Facchinelli has spent time with the Jr. Canadiens and Mississauga Senators organization in the past, before moving to the Majors for Bantam and Minor Midget. He will undoubtedly continue to be the shining star for Markham throughout the course of the season, showcasing his wicked release and accuracy, as well as his sense of the ice to be able to find open ice in the offensive zone. A shifty skater, Facchinelli also has the skills to go end-to-end too. He will draw the focus of his opponents all year long.

10: Hunter Haight – Center – Elgin Middlesex Chiefs (Alliance)

Last year’s Alliance Champs, the Elgin Middlesex Chiefs didn’t exactly start off the 2019-20 season in the way they’d imagined, battling to a 2-2-0 record in the Round Robin. However, there were plenty of bright spots to build upon in hopes of defending their Alliance title. One of those bright spots was returning star forward, Hunter Haight, who added four goals and four assists to rank tied for fifth in points following the Round Robin.

With an admirable work ethic at both ends of the ice, Haight is a responsible, 200-foot player who can be trusted in any situation. Often regarded as more of a playmaker than a goal-scorer, Haight utilized the Titans Early Bird to prove that he can be a finisher as well. Showcasing impressive hockey sense, Haight is able to dictate the pace of play in the offensive zone and can effectively draw defenders out of position. Strong on his edges, Haight is a shifty skater and also has a quick yet powerful release.

Honourable Mentions:

Here are a few players who got serious consideration for the list of top-10 performers, but just missed out. However, they deserved some recognition as well. Players are listed in alphabetical order.

  • Sam Alfano – Southern Tier Admirals (SCTA)
  • Cole Bianchin – Pittsburgh Penguins Elite (T1EHL)
  • Lorenzo Bonaiuto – Toronto Marlboros (GTHL)
  • Ryder McIntyre – Ajax-Pickering Raiders (ETA)
  • Michael Podolioukh – Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
  • Matthew Poitras – Whitby Wildcats (ETA)
  • Nathan Poole – Oshawa Generals (ETA)
  • Shawn Ramsey – Toronto Nationals (GTHL)
  • Jake Sederoff – Toronto Titans (GTHL)
  • Max Seguin – Toronto Nationals (GTHL)
  • Trent Swick – Southern Tier Admirals (SCTA)
  • Noah Van Vliet – Toronto Jr. Canadiens (GTHL)
  • Joshua Vogelsberg – Mississauga Reps (GTHL)

2019 Toronto Titans Early Bird: Tournament Preview

The 2020 OHL Draft year officially gets underway with the start of the Toronto Titans Early Bird Tournament. Outlined in the Tournament Preview are this year’s top contenders and the future stars of the OHL to keep an eye on.

Just like that, we’re back for another exciting year in Ontario Minor Midget hockey and Prospect Pipeline’s second season.

Summer has officially come to an end with the Toronto Titans Early Bird Tournament set to get underway. The annual starting line for young stars in the making in their OHL draft year, the Titans Early Bird always sets the stage for the season and offers an early look into the draft class’ top prospects.

All the top 2004-born talent from across Ontario, and some of the United States, will come together for a memorable week to kick off the 2019-20 season and the 2020 OHL Draft year.

2018 Toronto Titans Early Bird Tournament Recap

Last year’s tournament, as usual, provided an excellent forecast into how the 2019 OHL Draft class would develop. The future stars showed their faces early and often, and the majority of teams which found success in the tournament would continue along to have very successful seasons.

As was expected, the Don Mills Flyers rolled their way to the tournament championship, battling to a combined 8-0-0 record. The tournament was led in scoring by the likes of Shane Wright, Danny Zhilkin, Brenden Sirizzotti, Josh Bloom, Wyatt Johnston, Liam Arnsby, and many more, while defencemen such as Brandt Clarke, Artem Guryev, and Roman Schmidt impressed from beginning to end.

All in all, the tournament proved that consistency is key, as those who started off hot and kept grinding throughout the course of the campaign went on to hear their names called very early in the 2019 OHL Priority Selection.

Top-5 Contenders

As for the 2019 version of the Titans Early Bird, there are a few early favourites to come away as champions, and several top prospects who will undoubtedly make up the majority of the top picks at the 2020 OHL Draft.

In the 2019 OHF All-Ontario Bantam Championships, it was the host Toronto Titans who came away with the elusive title, the organization’s first ever provincial championship.

Without further ado, here are the top-5 contenders to challenge for the Titans Early Bird title, along with some of the names to watch as the tournament rolls along.

1: Toronto Jr. Canadiens

Toronto Jr. Canadiens Logo

  • 2018-19 Regular Season Record: 28-4-1
  • 2019 League Playoff Result: Lost in GTHL Finals

While the ’04 Toronto Jr. Canadiens likely won’t be able to repeat the dominance of the ’03 Don Mills Flyers, they head into the season as the unanimous favourites to take home the Titans Early Bird Tournament, and should dominate all year long.

After a special regular season, the Jr. Canadiens rolled their way to the GTHL Finals where they would meet their rival Marlboros. In somewhat of a surprising result, it was the 2nd-seeded Marlboros who took home the title, winning the final series by a score of 8-4.

However, the Jr. Canadiens reloaded in a big way over the offseason. With the additions of projected 1st overall pick, Adam Fantilli, and likely 1st round pick, D Ty Nelson, the Jr. Canadiens will be bigger, stronger, and more talented at both ends of the ice. Fantilli was a leader for the Toronto Red Wings ’03 team last year, driving them all the way to the OHL Cup Final. Meanwhile, Nelson remained loyal throughout a long season with JRC minor midget squad.

Fantilli, Adam of the Toronto Red Wings. Photo by Dan Hickling OHL Images
Adam Fantilli joins the Toronto Jr. Canadiens after a noteworthy year with the Toronto Red Wings in 2018-19. He is the projected 1st overall pick for the 2020 OHL Draft. (Photo Credit: Dan Hickling/OHL Images)

Beyond those, JRC also added offensive defenceman, Thomas Sirman, who had a very impressive season with the York Simcoe Express ’03 team in 2018-19. Further, defensive stalwart, Noah Van Vliet, comes over after a memorable run with Fantilli and the Toronto Red Wings ’03’s. Last but not least, Lleyton McLean joins the team fresh off of a GTHL Championship with the rival Toronto Marlboros ’04’s.

Combined with a deep returning forward corps, featuing the likes of Aidan Puley, Kyan Haldenby, and Brice Cooke, this will be a tough team to match up against. Along the back end, Michael Buchinger and Ethan Best will return to form an admirable and offensive-minded blueline.

2: Toronto Marlboros

Toronto Marlboros Logo

  • 2018-19 Regular Season Record: 25-4-4
  • 2019 League Playoff Result: Won GTHL Championship

The team that took down the powerhouse Jr. Canadiens, the Toronto Marlboros will have a tougher time doing so in 2019-20 after their rival’s roster additions. But, they will likely be their biggest challenger.

The Marlboros are equally deep up front, but it’s the team’s two-way play and attention to detail in their own zone that makes them so difficult to play against. That was an integral part of their run to the GTHL Championship last season, allowing just eight goals against in six games in the GTHL Finals against the powerful Jr. Canadiens.

The Marlies had their own significant additions over the offseason. Two-way defender, Lane Hinkley, joins the team after playing up a year with the Vaughan Kings last season. As well, flashy and dynamic forward, Luke Devlin, comes over from the rival Toronto Titans. Both will be huge contributors to the team’s success this year.

Upfront, the Marlies are led by the quick and skilled returnee Paul Ludwinski, along with Lorenzo Bonaiuto, Vincenzo Baiocchi, and Eli Sebastian. Unfortunately, the loss of Lleyton McLean to JRC will certainly sting. On the back end, Isiah George and Matthew Jovanovic will lead the charge with their ability to make effective break out passes or to skate the puck through the neutral zone.

3: Quinte Red Devils

Quinte Red Devils Logo

  • 2018-19 Regular Season Record: 29-2-5
  • 2019 League Playoff Result: Gold Medal at OMHA Championships

The reigning OMHA Champions, the Quinte Red Devils are incredibly strong at every position, as indicated by their +128 goal differential over their 36 ETA games last season. They had a relatively easy run, capturing a gold medal at the OMHA Championships and eventually reaching the OHF All-Ontario Semi-Finals.

Quinte is led on offence by the dynamic duo of Dalyn Wakely and Owen Beck, two highly-skilled and intelligent goal-scorers. The surrounding cast is just as dangerous, including Cooper Matthews and Corbin Roach, the Red Devils have some extraordinary depth.

On defence, Quinte boasts a variety of defenders who can be relied upon to take care of any given situation. Donovan McCoy and Aaron Brown are two blue liners who will catch your eye on any given night with their ability to transition the play up ice and produce offence from the point.

4: Toronto Titans

Toronto Titans Logo

  • 2018-19 Regular Season Record: 20-7-6
  • 2019 League Playoff Result: Lost in GTHL Semi-Finals

Despite bowing out to the Marlboros in the GTHL Semi-Finals in six games, the Toronto Titans would go on to capture the OHF All-Ontario Bantam Championships; an enviable runner-up prize.

The Titans boast an offensively gifted lineup through and through. Led by the duo of Kocha Delic and Nicholas Moldenhauer, this is a team that isn’t afraid to run up the score, showcased by their 4.09 goals per game in the GTHL last season. They also added Jonathan Melee, a center who had a huge year with the Eastern Ontario Wild last year. It should be noted that Melee is QMJHL Draft eligible. Meanwhile, the loss of Luke Devlin to the Marlboros will leave a clear hole in the lineup.

With that said, don’t expect the Titans to shy away from their defensive responsibilities. With several defencemen capable of playing a shutdown role, the Titans will lean heavily on Mason Chen and Patrick Wrzesinski. Further, goaltenders Rowan Kimens and Liam Sztuska have each shown flashes of possibly becoming top goaltending prospects for the 2020 OHL Draft.

5: Southern Tier Admirals

Southern Tier Admirals Logo

  • 2018-19 Regular Season Record: 28-1-3
  • 2019 League Playoff Result: Silver Medal at OMHA Championships

Sporting an incredible regular season record in the SCTA, the Southern Tier Admirals plowed their way to the OMHA Championship game, coming up just short against the aforementioned Red Devils. Similarly, the Admirals sported a +110 goal differential in 32 SCTA contests.

Unfortunately for Southern Tier, they will be in tough to replicate their success from the 2018-19 campaign as a result of losing one of their top forwards, Owen Mehlenbacher, to the Buffalo Jr. Sabres. In the meantime, Sam Alfano will take the reins; a skilled goal-scorer with size and strength to score some highlight reel goals.

Meanwhile, Andrew LeBlanc and Matthew Donnison are two defenders who can turn heads with their ability to shut down momentum in the defensive zone, and then quickly move the puck up ice with the strong skating skills.

 

2020 OHL Draft Top Prospect: Adam Fantilli

Although he isn’t eligible until the 2020 OHL Priority Selection, Adam Fantilli of the Toronto Red Wings has already established himself as an elite prospect. Despite his age, Fantilli’s name is one that you need to know.

Although he is one of the youngest players eligible for the 2020 OHL Priority Selection, Adam Fantilli is quickly becoming one of its most dynamic prospects.

Born in December of 2004, it is mind-boggling to comprehend that Fantilli has already competed against players nearly two years older than himself. Having skated for the Toronto Red Wings at the Minor Midget level before moving on to the Toronto Jr. Canadiens, Fantilli quickly became one of the GTHL’s most electrifying players before departing for Kimball Union Academy — dazzling his opponents with speed and creativity each and every time he took to the ice.

In 2018-19, Fantilli skated alongside Kitchener Rangers prospect Francesco Pinelli, and  rarely looked out of place. Sure, he may not be strong as his opponents owing to his young age, however, Fantilli’s ability to process the game and operate within it has placed him into a class of his own ahead of the 2020 OHL Priority Selection.

Developing an Offensive Dynamo

With Shane Wright awarded exceptional status by Hockey Canada ahead of the 2019-20 OHL season, Fantilli would appear to be a lock for first overall come the 2020 OHL Priority Selection. Sure, others will surely challenge Fantilli for the distinction, yet the youngster’s game could prove to be too well-rounded and dynamic for his Minor Midget colleagues to overcome.

As mentioned earlier, Fantilli is an explosive and purposeful skater — in fact, it is Fantilli’s skating which has come to define his game. Capable of meandering through opposing defences with relative ease, Fantilli relies on his superb edge-work and ample agility to give him an offensive edge. With separation speed and seemingly endless energy, Fantilli’s feet drive all components of his game.

What’s more is that in addition to his excellent footwork, Fantilli is an exceptional player-maker. As a forward who sees the ice well, Fantilli can move the puck to his teammates with confidence and regularly devises complex scoring opportunities. And, while Fantilli can drive the puck to the net himself, he stands as a much more versatile threat when he utilizes his teammates to his advantage.

One aspect of Fantilli’s game which will need to improve in the coming years, however, is the youngster’s on-ice discipline. Although he is as competitive as they come and determined to attain team success each and every time he steps onto the ice, Fantilli features a mean streak which can place him and his team into penalty trouble from time to time.

When able to reign in his aggression and direct it in a far more productive form, Fantilli stands as a boy amongst men despite being one of the youngest players on the ice and has the innate hockey sense and ability requisite of a top-tier OHL prospect and future NHL star.

The Years Ahead

While Fantilli is eligible for the 2020 OHL Priority Selection, there are no guarantees that he will take his talents to the OHL-level.

In the past, Fantilli has indicated his desire to play in the NCAA, and it goes without saying that there is surely substantial interest in his services south of the border. Although an NCAA commitment from Fantilli will likely not come until the 2020-21 season, he could select a destination much earlier given his proven potential as an elite prospect.

Most recently and following in his alleged interest to pursue an NCAA career, Fantilli walked away from the GTHL’s Toronto Jr. Canadiens in order to play alongside his brother Luca with Kimball Union Academy within the USHS-Prep circuit. Although his option to play in the OHL still remains, it appears increasingly likely that Fantilli will compete in the NCAA in the near future given his commitment to the USHL’s Chicago Steel for the 2020-21 campaign.