Philadelphia Flyers: Wyatt Kalynuk could be the next Flyers prospect to turn pro

Wyatt Kalynuk (Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Wyatt Kalynuk (Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

Having played three NCAA seasons, Wyatt Kalynuk could be the next Flyers prospect to turn pro next season.

The Flyers have already signed two of their prospects to professional contracts in the last few days. They could add a third to that list. Wyatt Kalynuk has climbed the rankings of Flyers prospects and has a decision to make on where he’ll play this fall. The team has his rights until the summer of 2021, so there is time.

As the captain at the University of Wisconsin, Kalynuk has taken on more responsibility for the team. According to head coach Tony Granato, Kalynuk was the team’s go-to offensive defenseman. The team wanted to go through him on the power play as he grabbed the most minutes with that unit.

He was second on the team in points (28), first in assists (21) and seventh in goals (7). He won’t overpower someone, weighing in at about 180 pounds. But he plays a solid, responsible game on the backend.

When he was first drafted Kalynuk was coming off his final season in the USHL with the Bloomington Thunder. He finished third on the team in points (31) and first in assists (25). He was named to the USHL Third All-Star Team. It was a big step forward for Kalynuk after finishing with 24 points the season before. And even better than the 15 points he put up in his first season in the USHL.

Kalynuk impressed during his rookie season with Wisconsin. His 25 points were fourth on the team while his 22 assists led the group. Both were tops among the team’s defensemen. Despite only posting three goals, it was still the most for defensemen as well. He was named to the NCAA (B1G) All-Rookie Team and earned an honorable mention on the league’s All-Star Team.

He posted an identical point total the following season, this time grabbing nine goals and 16 assists. He jumped to third on the team in points, second in goals, and fourth in assists. His goals and points were the most by a defenseman, but K’Andre Miller had him beat in assists. That season, Kalynuk earned a nod on the league’s Second All-Star Team.

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If Kalynuk decides to turn pro after his junior year, he will end his NCAA career with 19 goals and 59 assists. That puts him a 0.71 points-per-game average. The Lehigh Valley Phantoms would be his destination for at least the next season. He has a tremendous skating ability and is able to take chances offensively. But he will need to work on playing a heavier defensive game.