2020-21 Team: Chicago Steel (#24)
Date of Birth: November 15, 2002
Place of Birth: Newtown, CT, USA
Ht: 5-foot-11 Wt: 190 pounds
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2021 first-year eligible
- NHL Central Scouting: 26th (amongst NA skaters)
- FC Hockey: 26th
- Recruit Scouting: 39th
- Peter Baracchini’s March Rankings: 35th
- Matthew Zator’s April Rankings: 38th
- Andrew Forbes May Rankings: 36th
- Smaht Scouting: 28th
- Bob McKenzie’s Rankings: 31st
- Dobber Prospects Mid- Season Rankings: 45th
When you look at the Chicago Steel and its players, you can’t help but see Matthew Coronato’s 48 goals and 85 points. However, there is another Matthew that should be mentioned too. Matthew Samoskevich may not be as prolific as Coronato, but he definitely has the tools to become an effective top-six forward in the NHL.
Related: THW’s 2021 NHL Draft Guide
Samoskevich’s game lives on the rush and in transition. He has deceptive speed when he picks up the puck and can shift gears almost on command. He also has tremendous edges and soft hands that can embarrass defenders and goaltenders alike. In fact, he probably has some of the best hands of the 2021 draft class.
Samoskevich is basically a human highlight reel capable of bringing fans out of their seats at a moment’s notice. His defensive game might be the only thing that needs development, as the offensive toolkit he possesses is off the charts. He can beat you in a variety of ways, be it with a quick deke, precision pass, or snipe show of a shot. In other words, you better keep an eye on him when he’s on the ice.
Committed to the University of Michigan next season, Samoskevich will be around a plethora of talent as he joins fellow top prospects Matt Beniers, Kent Johnson, Owen Power, and Luke Hughes on a team that is quickly bordering on unfair. By the time he joins an NHL franchise in a few seasons, he could have multiple NCAA championships under his belt as well as the valuable experience of playing with future superstars.
Samoskevich has everything you want in a top-line forward, speed, creativity and the potential for bush loads of points. If he can harness all his raw potential and translate it to the NHL, the sky’s the limit.
Other THW Draft Profiles
Matthew Samoskevich – NHL Draft Projection
Ranked in the second round by many outlets, including myself, he won’t have to wait too long after the first round is completed before he hears his name called by someone. The elite package of creativity and offensive potential he possesses will be too enticing for a team to pass up, especially if they don’t have any exciting players in their pipeline.
“Arguably the most impressive part of his game, Samoskevich is an absolute treat to watch skate. Not only does he possess blistering speed, it only takes him a couple of strides to completely fly by his opponent. Second to that, he’s very elusive, and can evade just about every defender headed for him. Samoskevich is also deadly in transition, as he can either beat you with his quickness and agility, or he can stickhandle around a defender in a phone booth, and seek out a teammate streaking towards the offensive zone.” – Paul Zuk, Smaht Scouting
“Samoskevich’s game revolves around deception, as he regularly looks off his pass to fool defenders into blocking the wrong passing lane, shifting the game to his will as he stickhandles through offensive pressure and finds the slightest seam with very little effort.” – Hadi Kalakeche, The Hockey Writers
“Making dazzling plays and embarrassing his opponents at times, Samoskevich is one of the most talented players in the 2021 NHL Draft class from a raw skill perspective. His hands are quick and calculated, synchronized with his agile footwork, the Chicago center does an excellent job of creating separation and space to do damage offensively. He has a sneaky good shot that he gets off quickly but his bread and butter is his passing vision and creativity as a playmaker…” – Tony Ferrari, Dobber Prospects
- Hockey IQ
- Wrist shot
Under Construction (Improvements to Make)
- Defensive awareness
Samoskevich’s NHL potential is pretty substantial. With his offensive skillset and skating abilities, he should become a solid top-nine forward capable of scoring 20-25 goals. He could even notch a few 30 goal seasons with the right centerman.
Risk – 3/5, Reward – 5/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential
Offence – 8/10, Defence – 6/10
Samoskevich played for Team White in the 2021 BioSteel All-American Game where he played most of the game on the wing with Coronato. He was noticeable every shift, despite being on the wrong side of the scoreboard.
Matthew Zator is a THW freelance writer, media editor, and scout who lives and breathes Vancouver Canucks hockey, the NHL Draft, and prospects in general. He loves talking about young players and their potential. Matthew is a must-read for Canucks fans and fans of the NHL Draft and its prospects. For interview requests or content information, you can follow Matthew through his social media accounts which are listed under his photo at the conclusion of articles like this one about Tyler Motte.