Bowen Byram wins Top Prospect Award
Cranbrook’s Bowen Byram has been named winner of the Sherwin-Williams Top Prospect Award by the Canadian Hockey League (CHL).
The CHL yesterday announced the 10 national award winners for the 2018-19 season including five Western Hockey League players, led by Vancouver Giants defenceman Bowen Byram, who sits second in NHL Central Scouting’s Final North American Rankings ahead of the 2019 NHL Draft in Vancouver.
The 17-year-old product of Cranbrook wrapped up the 2018-19 campaign with 71 points in 67 appearances, including 26 goals to lead all WHL rearguards. He then finished first in league playoff scoring with 26 points, counting eight goals and 18 assists.
Byram is the first WHL player to claim the Top Prospect Award since current Philadelphia Flyers forward Nolan Patrick (Brandon Wheat Kings) in 2017.
Finalists for the award this year also included Arthur Kaliyev of the Hamilton Bulldogs, who ranks seventh among North American skaters, and Raphael Lavoie of the Halifax Mooseheads, who is listed 20th overall.
Other WHL players recognized include Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Ian Scott of the Prince Albert Raiders, who was named Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Year, along with New Jersey Devils prospect Ty Smith of the Spokane Chiefs (Real Canadian Superstore CHL Defenceman of the Year), Pittsburgh Penguins prospect Justin Almeida of the Moose Jaw Warriors (Bumper to Bumper CHL Sportsman of the Year) and 2019 NHL Draft prospect Dustin Wolf of the Everett Silvertips (CIBC CHL Scholastic Player of the Year).
The awards were presented as part of the 2019 Memorial Cup festivities in Halifax.
Byram is considered the top defensemen available in the NHL Entry Draft, June 22-11.
Lead image: The five WHL players who received awards, with Bowen Byram, right. Photo by Vincent Ethier