Flyers snag another big D-man that plays with some 'jam'


Ethan Samson became the third consecutive defenseman taken by the Flyers in the 2021 NHL draft when the club nabbed him during the sixth round with the 174th overall pick on Saturday.

The club selected blueliners Brian Zanetti in the fourth round and Ty Murchison in the fifth round.

All three have good size.

Samson, who doesn't turn 18 years old until August, played a big role for the Prince George Cougars in the shortened 2020-21 WHL season. He finished with 12 points and a plus-3 rating in 22 games. He led the Cougars in assists (11) and shots (64).

"This year was really exciting to be able to be a top guy on my team and play that role with heavy minutes, have the coach rely on me a lot," Samson said Saturday. "I think it helped me push myself to try to be the guy for my team that I wanted to be."

Flyers assistant general manager Brent Flahr said amateur scout Mark Greig, who heavily evaluates the WHL, was high on the righty-shot Samson.

"He’s close to 6-foot-2 and his frame’s going to still fill out as he’s an August birthday," Greig said. "He’s got some room to develop. Right-hand shot and for a D-man it’s always an asset as we find them harder to find. I think he’s got a lot of development left; he’s going to play on a good team in P.G. and for a good coach. He’s got upside."


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

In Prince George, Samson plays for Mark Lamb (general manager/head coach) and Jason Smith (associate coach), two former Flyers. Samson utilizes a physical brand of play in the defensive zone.

"He moves the puck, also defends and has some jam," Flahr said.

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