Matthew Knies, a player who fans have claimed was massively overhyped before finally signing and making his NHL debut at the end of the 2022-23 season. Knies came into the National Hockey League and was a massive contributor to the Leafs overcoming their first-round curse. With Knies recovering from a concussion, he will look to become a major player with the Toronto Maple Leafs this season. Here is why Matthew Knies is due for a monster season this year.
Knies Showed Multiple Glimpses of Greatness
In the ten NHL games that Matthew Knies played last year, three were in the regular season, while the other seven were playoff games. Knies recorded one goal and four assists for four total points. Only one assist was recorded in the regular season, but Knies had many high-danger opportunities to score and even better chances assist-wise. When Matthew Knies was on the ice, the opposing team needed to make sure their defense was excellent. Knies and any of his linemates were a legitimate offensive threat on the ice. However, Knies excelled most with Maple Leafs captain John Tavares and star winger Mitch Marner.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone either, though; the likelihood that Knies plays on the second line with Marner and Tavares is to be determined. New Maple Leafs general manager Brad Treliving inherited an already stellar team, but it was the additions he made that pushed this team to new heights. The possibilities are endless, and the Leafs now have Matthews, Tavares, Marner, Nylander, Bertuzzi, Domi, and Knies to use in their top six. Nick Robertson will also look to reclaim himself this season after suffering another injury early in the 2022-23 season.
Related: Matthew Knies Stats
Knies’ glimpses of greatness came in the game he debuted against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Knies performed beyond what was expected of him, and this helped the young star earn the trust of his coach, Sheldon Keefe. Knies wouldn’t put up impressive numbers across the stat sheet, but his determination and sheer will on the ice is what got him a top-six roster spot early on.
The best part of Knies’ game came in the playoffs, recording the primary assist on John Tavares’ series-winning goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Knies played the dirty areas on the ice and made sure that he continued to play that way, regardless of the team he was playing. The only downfall to Knies’ strong playoff performance was an injury, and injuries are unavoidable in the NHL.
Matthew Knies 2023-24 Season Prediction
Do I think Matthew Knies has a legitimate shot at the 2024 Calder Memorial Trophy? Yes, in fact, I think Matthew Knies has a chance at being the runner-up or even the player who is awarded the 2024 Calder Memorial Trophy.
I want to set the bar, I think Matthew Knies will score more than 55 points this season, which shouldn’t be outlandish. 20 goals and 35 assists shouldn’t be too terribly difficult to hit. However, if the spot in the lineup isn’t in the top six, we might be looking at a different point total.
I can see Sheldon Keefe giving everyone the opportunity to earn their spot in the lineup, including their star players. Adding Bertuzzi and Domi into the mix makes for a stronger core and adds more competition to their lineup. However, I do see Knies ending up with Tavares and Bertuzzi on his line for small stints throughout the season.
I think it goes without saying that Matthew Knies is one of the Leafs’ brightest young prospects heading into the 2023-24 season. Matthew Knies will certainly be ready for a new start with an entire season ahead of him.