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Royals bring back Chen, add Thurston

Monday, August 14th
Action photos of Mike Chen and Trevor Thurston

Reading, Pa. - The Reading Royals, ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League's Philadelphia Flyers and American Hockey League's Lehigh Valley Phantoms, announced that defenseman Mike Chen has re-signed and defenseman Trevor Thurston has signed with the club for the 2023-24 season.Chen returns to Reading for his seventh professional season and third with the Royals. The Rockville, Maryland native posted four points (0g-4a) and 22 penalty minutes in 42 regular-season games with Reading last season. He has totaled 11 points (1g-10a) and 43 penalty minutes in 76 career regular-season games in Reading. Additionally, Chen has recorded one assist in 13 Kelly Cup Playoff games for the Royals.Prior to Reading, the 30-year-old played four seasons between the Southern Professional Hockey League, VHL and ECHL. In the ECHL, Chen played for the South Carolina Stingrays where he totaled 12 points (5g-7a) in 55 contests. He has collected 23 points (6g-17a) and 81 penalty minutes in 131 total ECHL career games.His professional career began in 2017-18 when he joined the Knoxville Ice Bears in the SPHL after three years at the Salem State College. Chen has played in a total of 235 professional games coming into the 2023-24 season.Thurston joins the Royals for his first professional season after playing for the Kamloops Blazers, Lethbridge Hurricanes, and Prince Albert Raiders in the Western Hockey League; Merritt Centennials in the British Columbia Hockey League; and most recently, for the Cape Breton Eagles in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. The 21-year-old led Eagles' defensemen in goals (9) and points (21). Additionally, Thurston attended the Calgary Flames 2022 prospect development camp as a try-out invite. Prior to his junior hockey career, Thurston played for the Delta Hockey Academy in the Canadien Sport School Hockey League.

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