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2019 Draft Countdown No. 14: Matthew Robertson

Welcome to Canucks Army’s 2019 Draft Countdown. Over the next four weeks leading up to the draft, we’ll be rounding up scouting reports, quotes, and videos about our Top-100 prospects available. Here is an aggregated profile on Matthews Robertson. 

Matthew Robertson

Date of birth: March 9th, 2001

Nation: Canada 

Position: D

Shoots: L

Height: 6’4″ / 192 cm

Weight: 201 lbs / 91 kg

Profile: Matthew Robertson played a key role in the Edmonton Oil Kings’ breakout season. He was likely their best two-way defender, posting 33 points in 52 games while also providing a steady presence defensively. He doesn’t have top-pairing upside, but Robertson is big, strong, good-skating defenceman who can much minutes in a variety of situations. 

At six-foot-four, 198-pounds with great mobility, Matthew Robertson is an attractive option for NHL teams looking for a solid two-way defenceman. If Robertson was a right-shot defenceman, his stock would be even higher.

“I had some injury and some adversity that I faced through the year, but I think now it’s coming together and so is the team,” Robertson said following practice Monday. “We found some success and we just want to keep moving forward. I’m playing with some confidence, but I’m not trying to get too high. I just want to keep playing my game and going out there every day, not letting anything distract me and just playing a team game.” – Derek Van Diest, Edmonton Sun 

Strong and mobile two-way blue liner with a team-first attitude who handles both big minutes and big situations with maturity and confidence. Robertson is a throwback to the Western Canadian defensemen of old who were able to intimidate with physicality or their play with the puck. He’s clearly the top defender for the Oil Kings by the way he’s used at even strength and special teams, and how often Robertson is being summoned to address his coach’s concerns. His size, long reach and timing makes him close to impossible to beat one on one, and few teenage defensemen can force opponents into so many unsuccessful zone entries simply by standing up at the blue line. He’ll respect oncoming speed by giving himself more room, but Robertson’s long stick and strong upper body keep the majority of puck carriers to the outside. Robertson has soft hands and sharp hand-eye coordination that allows him to corral pass attempts cleanly and quickly transition from defense to offense. He’s not entirely married to the slot, but he keeps his head up and always looks for gaps to cover. – Steve Kourianos, The Draft Analyst 

There’s no doubt he’s going to be a first rounder next year, it’s now just a matter of how high.

If there’s one area I’d like to see Robertson improve in, it’s his ability to produce offensively, but I believe that will come with more experience and a better supporting cast. As for what he would like to improve in his game as he heads into his draft year, Robertson had a few ideas.

“I’d like to gain some weight and get a little stronger, but also work on my skating and my shot,” said the Edmonton product.

It’s tough to tell exactly what Matthew Robertson’s ceiling is, and that’s what will make these next few years even more exciting. He has a chance to become one of the best defenders in this league and that should have Oil Kings fans salivating. – Tyler Yaremchuk, Oilersnation 

Robertson’s solid defensive game pairs well with his puck-moving abilities. He could be quicker at adapting his positioning when coverage breaks down in his end and at giving a supporting option when his team gets possession, but he is generally very effective, especially in using his stick and size to break plays. Sometimes all that is needed is one forceful shove from Robertson to completely separate an attacker from the puck, allowing a teammate to swoop in and start the attack.

The clips of Robertson moving the puck show the diversity of his transition game. At the centre of it is the desire to advance the play in a controlled way. In the second clip, you can see him use the boards, but it’s to make a pass to himself to elude a forechecker rushing onto him. He completes his play by hitting his teammate at the top of the defensive zone with another feed. – David St-Louis, Habs Eyes on the Prize

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