Offensive-minded blueliner who skates well. Will need to add strength and refine his decision-making to succeed at the pro level.
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July 2022 – Thornton was passed over in the 2022 NHL Draft. Nick Richard
May 2022 – There is a lot to like about Thornton’s game, especially when it comes to his offensive abilities. He processes the game at a rapid rate and plays the game at a quick pace, constantly moving his feet and using quick strides and crossovers to motor around the ice. He is able to put himself in a good position in the offensive zone, ready to receive and willing to quickly find a passing lane. However, this habit can prove to be dangerous at the next level as he does not display the poise of an NHL-caliber defensive prospect. He can sometimes panic with the puck and throw a bad pass or make a bad read in the defensive zone, pulling himself out of position. Thornton, however, has got the speed and agility to make up for mistakes in his own end, using his edges well and giving maximum effort. He doesn’t have the ideal size and strength of an NHL prospect but he has the offensive skill-set to play professionally in a moderate role, specifically on the powerplay. In the right organization, with the right development and coaching, Thornton could find himself being a mid/late-round success story. Evan Pace