NHL ranks Troops’ trio

NORTH BAY, Ont. — Goaltender Charlie Robertson, forward Anthony Romani and defenceman Wyatt Kennedy of the North Bay Battalion are among a total of 55 Ontario Hockey League skaters and goalies in midseason rankings released Friday by the National Hockey League’s central scouting department.

At No. 12, Robertson is the top-rated among four OHLers on a list of 32 North American-based goaltenders in advance of the NHL Draft to be held June 28-29 at Nashville. Romani, a centre and right winger, is 170th of 224 North American-based skaters, and Kennedy is 216th.

“While these lists can often be a distraction, we’re happy that our players have received some recognition for their hard work,” said general manager Adam Dennis. “We look forward to watching them continue to grow and improve as players on a daily basis.”

In 13 games, rookie Robertson has a 3.28 goals-against average, an .885 save percentage, one shutout and a won-lost-extended record of 7-3-1.

Robertson, a six-foot-three, 167-pound London native who turns 18 on April 2, was a seventh-round choice in the 2021 OHL Priority Selection from the London Jr. Knights U16s.

He has been named to Team Red for the Kubota CHL-NHL Top Prospects Game at Langley, B.C., on Jan. 25. The game will showcase the top 40 Canadian Hockey League skaters and goaltenders eligible for the NHL draft.

Romani has 11 goals and 10 assists for 21 points in 37 games this season. As a rookie in 2021-22, he played 54 games, scoring eight goals and earning six assists for 14 points.

Romani, who turns 18 on July 12, is a Pickering, Ont., resident who was a third-round choice in 2021 from the Toronto Jr. Canadiens. He stands six feet and weighs 178 pounds.

Kennedy was selected nine picks after Romani from the Rockland Nationals U18s. The Ottawa native, who measures six-foot-five and weighs 186 pounds, turns 18 on May 27.

Rookie Kennedy has two goals and four assists for six points in 39 games after seeing action in seven games last season, earning one assist.

Left winger Colby Barlow of the Owen Sound Attack, ranked 10th, is the top-rated OHL skater.

Connor Bedard of the Western Hockey League’s Regina Pats is rated No. 1 among North American skaters, while fellow centre Adam Fantilli of the University of Michigan Wolverines, whose OHL rights are held by the Battalion, is No. 2.

Centre Leo Carlsson of Orebro of the Swedish Hockey League, the top professional league in Sweden, is ranked first among 130 international skaters. There are 12 international goaltenders rated.

Carson Bjarnason of the WHL’s Brandon Wheat Kings is the top-ranked North American goaltender. He will split Team Red crease duties with Robertson at the Top Prospects Game.

Players are first-time eligible for the NHL draft in the year they turn 18, unless they are born Sept. 16 or later, in which case they must wait until the following year.

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