Fantasy Summary

A long-term project, Phillips might one day become an important contributor to Pittsburgh’s offense.


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May 2020 – After transferring to Penn State from the University of Minnesota, the left-handed defenseman had an average first season with the Nittany Lions. In 27 games, he scored two goals and added seven assists for nine total points. While he may not have produced well offensively, he did play an important role on the defense for Penn State. Clare McManus

April 2019 – Focusing on defense as a sophomore, the skilled blueliner registered just one goal and nine assists in 34 games as a Golden Gopher. His development must have benefited, though, from the stability of playing for just one squad. A year earlier, he skated for the Fargo Force and Muskegon Lumberjacks of the USHL before getting into 11 games for the U of Minnesota. His junior collegiate campaign should indicate a lot about his hockey future. Mark Allan

March 2019 – After notching a goal and seven assists in the opening 12 games of his first full season with the U of Minnesota, Phillips hit a wall. Adding just two assists in the ensuing 21 outings and posting a minus-12 rating is not what Pittsburgh had in mind when it drafted him in the third round. However, he’s only 19. Mark Allan

December 2018 – After just 12 games to start the U of Minnesota’s NCAA season, Phillips has eight more points than he had in a scoreless 11-game stint for the Golden Gophers last season. A goal and seven helpers imply some maturity and perhaps hard work during the off-season, and bode well for his first full collegiate campaign. Mark Allan

April 2018 – After only three USHL outings with the Fargo Force, Phillips was dealt at the start of the season to Muskegon. Describing the 5-11, 188-pounder as “a top defenseman in this league,” Lumberjacks’ GM John Vanbiesbrouck said he was “pretty excited.” Phillips, named to the USHL 2016-17 all-rookie team, gave Muskegon the desired offensive lift with four goals and five assists in just 13 games. In December, though, Phillips joined the U of Minnesota as blueliner Nate Knoepke returned to the USHL for the second semester. Termed “a dynamic player” by Gophers’ head coach Don Lucia, Phillips nonetheless went pointless in 11 games in his NCAA baptism. A two-way D-man with offensive instincts, the native of Minnesota’s hockey hotbed in Edina remains on Pittsburgh’s long-range radar. Mark Allan

October 2017 – The young defender is off to a solid three-game start with a goal, two assists, 19 PIMs and minus-2 in his second campaign with the USHL’s Fargo Force. The native of Edina, Minn., is staying close to home after committing to the U of Minnesota starting next season. He’s on Pittsburgh’s long-term radar. Mark Allan

June 2017 – A self-described offensive defenseman who loves to jump into a rush, Phillips says he doesn’t want to neglect the other side of the puck. As a longtime fan of the Penguins, he models his play after Pittsburgh star Kris Letang. After seven goals, 20 points and plus-18 in 56 games with the Fargo Force of the USHL, Phillips has expressed a desire to follow Jake Guentzel’s path and stay close to home by attending the U of Minnesota.

Like virtually every teen player, Phillips needs to add muscle. By drafting a young player who plans to go the NCAA route, the Penguins have signaled they’re prepared to wait for him to mature. Mark Allan

Fantasy Upside 5.5
NHL Certainty 7.0
Country USA
Position D
Roster Type Free Agent, Junior, Minors
Shoot/Glove Left
Date of Birth September 9, 1999
Height 5‘11”
Weight 175 lbs
Drafted 2017 Round 3; Overall: 93


 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2014-2015 Edina HighMN State3 0 11 0|        
  MN Canadiens 14U AAAMNBEL 14U16 3 36 -|        
  Edina HighUSHS-MN25 4 812 6|Playoffs2 1 45
 2015-2016 Team TDS TransportationUMHSEHL9 2 35 6|        
  B16 - Red (Final 54)MNHP-163 0 00 -|        
  Team Grey USA-S165 1 34 6|        
  Edina HighUSHS-MN25 2 1315 20|Playoffs2 3 14
  Fargo ForceUSHL3 0 00 0|        
 2016-2017 Fargo ForceUSHL56 7 1320 35|Playoffs3 0 00
  B17 - Red (Final 54)MNHP-173 1 12 -|        
  Team Gold USA-S175 0 11 -|        
  USA U18Hlinka Gretzky Cup5 0 22 2|        
  USA U19WJAC-195 1 12 0|        
 2017-2018 Fargo ForceUSHL3 1 23 19|        
  Muskegon Lumberjacks USHL13 4 59 18|        
  Univ. of MinnesotaNCAA11 0 00 21|        
  USA U19WJAC-195 0 22 0|        
 2018-2019 Univ. of MinnesotaNCAA34 1 910 20|        
 2019-2020 Penn State Univ.NCAA27 2 79 20|        
 2020-2021 Penn State Univ.NCAA20 3 47 25|        
 2021-2022 Penn State Univ.NCAA32 5 712 16|        
  Wilkes-Barre/Scranton PenguinsAHL1 0 00 0|        
 2022-2023 Savannah Ghost PiratesECHL27 0 22 4|        
  Iowa HeartlandersECHL35 2 810 20|