Phantoms ink first-rounder Carter

The Philadelphia Phantoms today signed center Jeff Carter to an amateur tryout contact. The 6-foot-3, 200-pound forward was the Philadelphia Flyers’ first-round selection (11th overall) in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft.

Carter, who recently finished his junior season with Sault Ste. Marie of the Ontario Hockey League, also signed a tryout contract with the Phantoms last season and appeared in all 12 of their playoff games. He recorded four goals and an assist with a club-high two game-winning goals during his first action as a professional.

The 20-year-old was named an OHL First Team All-Star this season after leading the Greyhounds in goals (34), points (74), power-play goals (14) and plus/minus (+20) over just 55 games. Carter also tied for first on the team in assists (40), played in the OHL All-Star Game for the second year in a row, and was selected Smartest Player and Hardest Shot in the Western Conference by OHL coaches.

An OHL Second Team All-Star in 2003-04, Carter helped Team Canada capture the gold medal at the 2005 World Junior Championships and the 2003 Under-18 World Championships, as well as the silver medal at the 2004 World Junior Championships.

Carter, who totaled 246 points (123 goals, 123 assists) in 236 career games with Sault Ste. Marie from 2001-05, is expected to make his season debut with Philadelphia on Friday when the team hosts the Hershey Bears at the Wachovia Spectrum.

The Phantoms have already clinched a 2005 Calder Cup Playoff berth and are currently three points behind Binghamton for the East Division lead with three games remaining.