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Prospect Update: Mathew Hill
By Thomas Harrington
A sixth-round pick from 2019, Mathew Hill was Anaheim’s final pick of the 2019 NHL Entry Draft. He just finished his third season playing for the Barrie Colts of the OHL.
Hill played in 63 games for the Colts and scored two goals and seven points. At 6’3”, Hill is a big, physical defenseman who is more known for his physical play than his offensive numbers. Besides the two goals, he only had 35 shots in those 63 games, and at one point went eight straight games without a shot on goal. He recorded his first assist five games into the season and scored his first goal in his 13th game of the season. Despite not putting up big offensive numbers, Hill is an important part of his team. He played in every game for Barrie and was the only player to do so in the 2019-2020 season. In an odd statistical twist, Hill actually took two faceoffs during the season, and they both came during the same game. He won one of them.
This coming season, Hill will be returning to Barrie, where he’s spent his entire junior career. I’ve got a few expectations for him this coming season. First, to once again play in every game for the Colts. The more games he can play, the better he can get and the more complete his overall game will be. Second, even though he’s not known for his offensive skill set, I would like to see him score another goal or two and put up a few more points. Finally, I’d like to see him record more shots on goal. More shots will show that he’s getting more involved with the offensive play and hopefully lead to better offensive numbers from him.
Hill is still several years away from having a shot at the NHL. He still has at least one more year of junior hockey ahead of him, and possibly an overage season after that as well. If his game can evolve a little more beyond what he’s shown the last two years in Barrie, he’s got a shot at signing an entry-level contract with Anaheim a year from now. However, that’s far from a guarantee, and the next couple of years will really show what kind of prospect Anaheim has on their hands.
Hill is currently unsigned and needs to sign a contract with Anaheim by next summer if he wants to remain a part of the organization. He is currently the only unsigned junior player that Anaheim has drafted over the last couple of years. All other unsigned prospects played in the NCAA or USHL this past season. If Hill can really excel and impress this season, then expect to see Anahim give him an entry-level contract. However, if he takes a step back in his development, then Anaheim will likely not sign him and lose his rights.
For now, Hill will be playing for Esbjerg in Denmark until the OHL seasons starts up.
The next prospect update will be on Jack Kopacka.
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November 21st, 2020