Flyers draft Swiss defenseman, who enjoys special moment with family


In the fourth round of the 2021 NHL draft, the Flyers selected Swiss-born defenseman Brian Zanetti with the 110th overall pick.

The 6-foot-2, 181-pound prospect put up nine goals and 20 assists through 41 games for Lugano last season at the Swiss junior level. He also had an assist in five games for Switzerland at the U-18 IIHF World Junior Championship. In 2021-22, the 18-year-old will come to North America and play for the OHL's Peterborough Petes.

"He's a tall, lanky kid, needs time to fill out and get stronger, but mobile, long, can defend and move the puck," Flyers assistant general manager Brent Flahr said Saturday. "He's a real interesting kid. He's got some rawness to him, but a kid that against the top competition in the world in the end, stood out on his team there. A guy that we'll certainly help along here to develop."

At home in his native Switzerland, Zanetti said he was eating dinner with his family as he got drafted.

"When I saw my name, my parents and I were super happy and very excited," he said. "My father started to cry a bit. It was very emotional for me and for my grandfather and grandmother and my brothers. We were super excited together."

More: A winger with 'dynamic speed' and a goalie headline Flyers' 2021 draft class

Zanetti, who was one of three blueliners taken by the Flyers in this year's draft, said he wants to improve his shot and strength.


"I think that I'm a two-way defender that likes to make plays," he said. "I think that I have good skating ability and I know how to use my long stick and long reach."

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