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Royals Announce Multiple Transactions, Assigned Anson Thornton, G, by Arizona Coyotes

by Reading Royals

Royals Announce Multiple Transactions, Assigned Anson Thornton, G, by Arizona Coyotes

The Reading Royals, proud ECHL affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers and Lehigh Valley Phantoms, announced that goaltender Anson Thornton has been assigned to Reading by the Arizona Coyotes from the Tucson Roadrunners. Additionally, forward Tag Bertuzzi has agreed to a Professional Tryout Agreement (PTO) with the Hartford Wolfpack, and goaltender Brody Claeys has been released from his Standard Player Contract (SPC).

Thornton, 20, is in his first professional season on an NHL contract with the Phoenix Coyotes. The Maple, Ontario native opened the 2023-24 season with Phoenix’s American Hockey League affiliate in Tucson. With the Roadrunners, Thornton recorded a 2-1-0 record, a 4.10 goals-against average, and a .849 save percentage.

The 6’3″, 185-pound, right-handed catching netminder attended the Coyotes’ 2021, 2022, and 2023 training camps. He was also been named to the Coyotes’ Rookie Face-off 2021, 2022, and 2023 rosters. Thornton attended the 2021 training camp on an amateur tryout agreement and appeared in one preseason game with Arizona, where he stopped all 17 shots faced to earn the win against the Los Angeles Kings on Sept. 27, 2021.

Internationally, Thornton won the 2019 Amerigol LATAM Cup with Team Jamaica on Sept. 8, 2019, defeating the defending champion Colombia with a score of 3-2 at the Florida Panthers IceDen stadium in Coral Springs, Florida. He posted a 2.86 goals-against average, a .900 save percentage, and a shutout in two games with Team Jamaica.

Prior to his professional career, Thornton played in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) for the Sarnia Sting and Barrie Colts. He hoisted a 37-25-3 record, a 3.46 goals-against average, a .896 save percentage, and one shutout in 70 OHL career games. He set career highs in wins (29), goals-against average (3.13), and save percentage (.903) in his final OHL season with Barrie (2022-23). He signed an OHL standard player agreement with Sarnia on Aug. 15, 2020, after he was selected third overall in the 2020 Under 18 Priority Selection.

Prior to the OHL, Thornton played for the Toronto Titans Midget AAA program. He also won the GTHL and OHL Cup Championships in 2019 with the Don Mills Flyers. Thornton posted a 1.21 GAA and a .909 SV% in four OHL tournament games.

Bertuzzi, 22, is in his second professional season and has registered 20 points (10g-10a), 13 penalty minutes, and a -7 rating in 28 games for the Royals. The Vancouver, British Columbia native was acquired by the Royals on Nov. 26, 2023, from the Tulsa Oilers in exchange for forward Alec Butcher.

Bertuzzi laced up for 14 games for Tulsa to open the 2023-24 season. The 6’1″, 220-pound, left-shot forward recorded three points (1g-2a), a -5 rating, and six penalty minutes with Tulsa. He totaled 52 points (24g-28a) and 32 penalty minutes in 64 games with Norfolk and Tulsa as a rookie last season.

This is Bertuzzi’s second stint at the American Hockey League level, as he appeared in one game for the Charlotte Checkers last season. He skated in Charlotte’s 5-2 win over the Providence Bruins on Dec. 23, 2022.

Prior to making his North American professional debut, Bertuzzi notched 23 points (7G, 16A) in 22 games with HK Levice of the Slovakian second division during the COVID-canceled 2020-21 OHL season.

He played 191 OHL games, accumulating 112 points (53G, 59A) split among Guelph, Hamilton, and Flint. Bertuzzi also represented Canada at the U17 level.

Tag is the son of former NHL All-Star Todd Bertuzzi, and current Toronto Maple Leaf Tyler Bertuzzi is his first cousin.

The Royals continue a three-game series against the Wheeling Nailers in Wheeling, West Virginia, on Friday, Feb. 9, and Saturday, Feb. 10, with 7:10 p.m. face-offs at WesBanco Arena.

The Royals return home on Saturday, Feb. 17, for their Reading Premium Night promotional game presented by SlyFox Beer! The home game will feature a pre-game Happy Hour (6-7 p.m.) and a pre-game photo opportunity with Slapshot in sec. 109 up until 6:15 p.m., presented by Albright College.

To order tickets, visit

Reading Royals Season Memberships, six-game plans, 10-game plans, and group tickets are available for the 2023-24 season now by visiting the Royals’ box office at Santander Arena or by calling 610-898-7825.

The Reading Royals, proud affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers and Lehigh Valley Phantoms, are in their 22nd season in the ECHL. They won their first Kelly Cup championship in 2013 and have clinched playoff berths in 12 of the previous 13 seasons. They are five-time division champions and were the 2021-22 Eastern Conference champions. The Berks County Convention Center Authority (BCCCA), founded in 1996, owns the Royals and oversees operations at Santander Arena.