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Prospect Update: Matt Berkovitz
By Thomas Harrington
A fifth round pick from 2014, defenseman Matt Berkovitz is one of Anaheim’s oldest prospects and has been playing in the NCAA for the past three seasons for the U.S. Military Academy. He also served as the team’s captain for the first time.
Berkovitz has never been a player known for his offensive exploits. This past season, he scored one goal and six points in 22 games. The 22 games represented a career low in games played for him; however, that was because the pandemic cut their season short. The Military Academy only played in 22 games, so Berkovitz played in every game last season. He also only took two minor penalties all season. Also, despite playing in five fewer games than the season before, he did record one more assist and point.
Given the uncertainty of hockey coming into this past season, I only had one expectation for Berkovitz, and that was to play in every game. Despite playing in only 22 games, he met that goal.
This coming season, Berkovitz will be returning to the U.S. Military Academy for his fourth year, and he’ll once again be their captain. He has scored one goal in each of his first three seasons in the NCAA. Even though he won’t ever be a big-time scorer or point producer, I would like to see Berkovitz score at least two goals this coming season. I’d also like to see him again play in every game for the U.S. Military Academy.
Berkovitz is currently unsigned and Anaheim owns his rights until August 2022. As of right now, I don’t think Anaheim will sign him before next August. He’s had a decent college career, but Anaheim has several other defensemen in their system who I think they’d rather get playing time with the Gulls. However, if he can finish his college career with a great season, then I could see Anaheim signing him next summer and seeing what he does against pro competition. If that happens, he’ll be given the standard entry-level contract.
The next prospect update will be on Sam Colangelo.
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August 16th, 2021