Matthew Strome comes from a strong blood line of hockey talent. Brothers Ryan and Dylan were drafted 5th and 3rd overall in their respective NHL Entry Drafts.
Matthew does not hold the draft pedigree that his brother have, as he was drafted in the fourth round this past June. However, he is not just a write-off and is still a very talented hockey player.
No. 24: Matthew Strome
Age: 18 (1/6/1999)
Acquired Via: 2017 NHL Draft -- Round 4, Pick 106 (Pick acquired from Tampa Bay along with a seventh-round pick in 2017 and Valtteri Filppula in exchange for Mark Streit on March 1, 2017)
2016-17 League/Team/Statistics: Hamilton (OHL) - 34 G, 28 A in 66 GP
Ranking in BSH Winter 2017 25 Under 25: N/A (was not in system)
Last season, with the OHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs, Strome put up 34 goals and 28 assists in 66 games. He represented Canada in this past year’s under-18 IIHF World Junior Championships, scoring one goal and two assists in five games.
One thing that seemed evident in Ron Hextall’s strategy this past draft was to add size, and Strome certainly fits that bill. He is listed at 6’3” and 203 pounds.
But we’ve all seen the story line that has been pinned to Matthew from the moment the Flyers called his name back in June:
“He can’t skate!”
While he is still a quality player in many other areas, it is true that Strome’s skating abilities are very lacking. His skating is clunky, and he does not have much jump in his step. But he is a project, and he can work on his skating ability for the next couple years. He now has the added benefit of having NHL coaches and trainers to help teach and train him.
A big, skilled winger that plays a complete and consistent game. Battles hard for puck possession and is relentless on both the power play and penalty kill. Plays a hard-nosed game and uses his size to establish his presence around the net. Has good hands, an accurate shot, and zero compromise hockey sense. His skating and overall balance off the rush and in-transition is a work in progress that is continuing to get better by the day. That being said, his vision is excellent and his offensive talent is apparent; he is able to play at a fast pace. Being able to keep up is a big part of that, and, moving forward, he has the potential to develop into a strong two-way winger that is hard to play against and can be relied on in all situations.
This scouting report from Eliteprospects.com’s Curtis Joe praises Strome’s vision and hockey sense. Skating is something that can be taught and improved upon. But being able to read a play, or view the game from the ice, is something that does not come as easily to players. Yes, Strome is a project, but if you can help him improve the areas he is lacking, the payoff will be worth it.
You might remember a player named Ryan Smyth. He scored 842 points in his career in over 1,200 games played. He carved out a very solid career over the span of 18 years in the NHL. He, too, was not a very good skater.
In conclusion, Matthew Strome is a player to watch in the upcoming years. He won’t be cracking the NHL roster any time soon, but down the line his impact might be felt. He’ll continue his junior hockey career next year in the Ontario Hockey League with the Hamilton Bulldogs, and we’ll be able to get another look at him next summer during the Flyers’ developmental camp.
How We Voted For Matthew Strome
How We Voted At No. 24
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How The Community Voted For Matthew Strome
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