Five players with NAHL ties taken in 2022 NHL Draft
The NAHL is pleased to announce that five players with NAHL ties were selected in the 2022 NHL Draft, which was held July 7-8 at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec.
The five players was the most selected since 2019 when the NAHL had six players selected.
The first player selected was former Minnesota Wilderness forward Zam Plante, who was selected #150 overall in Round 5 by the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Plante, 17, played in the NAHL for the Wilderness during the 2020-21 season. The University of Minnesota-Duluth commit also played the past two seasons for Hermantown High in Minnesota, where he put up 125 points in just 42 games played. Plante’s first career NAHL goal came on May 13, 2021 in a 6-2 win at Chippewa. He also spent time during the 2021-22 season in the USHL with the Chicago Steel.
The next player taken was Minnesota Wilderness forward Barrett Hall, who was selected #164 overall in the 6th round by the Seattle Kraken.
Hall, 18, spent this past season playing in the NAHL for the Wilderness and recorded 20 points (5 goals, 15 assists) in 19 regular season games. He also posted five points in nine Robertson Cup Playoff games. On June 8, 2022, Hall announced his commitment to play NCAA Division I hockey for St. Cloud State University. He was one of only four Wilderness players to finish with a point-per-game average or better.
Hall’s time with the Wilderness was spent in two phases, as he played his final season of high school hockey with Gentry Academy in between. In 25 games with the Stars, Hall led all scorers with 55 points (25 goals/30 assists) in 25 games. His performance with Gentry also led to him being named one of ten finalists for Minnesota’s Mr. Hockey award, given annually to the state’s top senior high school hockey player.
Hall is also an alum of the NAPHL, having played briefly for the Madison Capitols 18U team during the 2019-20 season. He played in five NAPHL games and recorded one goal.
Right after Hall, the next NAHL player to go was former Corpus Christi IceRays defenseman Hunter McDonald, who was taken #165 overall in the 6th round by the Philadelphia Flyers. McDonald, 20, played in the NAHL during the 2019-20 season for the IceRays. His first career NAHL goal came on March 6, 2020 in a 4-3 loss at New Mexico. Hall, who is committed to play NCAA Division I hockey at Northeastern University, spent the remainder of his junior career in the USHL with Omaha and Chicago.
At pick #169 overall in the 6th round, the Los Angeles Kings selected former former Minot Minotauros forward Jared Wright.
Wright, 19, played in the NAHL for the Minotauros during the 2020-21 season. Prior to that he also played high school hockey in Minnesota for St. Thomas Academy. The Colgate University recruit played for the Omaha Lancers in the USHL this past season, recording 34 points in 59 games played.
The final NAHL player that was selected was former Minot Minotauros forward Ben Strinden, who was taken #210 overall in the 7th round by the Nashville Predators. Strinden, 20, was originally an NAPHL tender for the Minotauros and made his NAHL debut on November 19, 2019, where he also scored a goal in a 4-3 win at the Wilderness.
Strinden also played in the NAPHL for two seasons for the Northstar Knights, where he had 25 points in 21 NAPHL games and also put up nine points in six Dixon Cup Playoff games. Strinden played in the USHL with Muskegon this past season, putting up 56 points in 61 games.