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Top 25 under 25: Upcoming Season Will Define the Future for Adin Hill and the Arizona Coyotes at #22

Goaltending uncertainty hasn’t been a longstanding issue for the Arizona Coyotes until recently, and Adin Hill could be a long-term solution.

Portland Winterhawks v Kelowna Rockets Photo by Marissa Baecker/Getty Images

22- Adin Hill- G

Where Did He Come From? Drafted 76th Overall in the 3rd Round of the 2015 Draft

Rank in last year’s 21 under 21? 4

Has He Played in the NHL?: No, but he will at some point this season.

About Adin Hill:

Taken at 76th overall 2 years ago, Adin Hill had a very successful junior hockey career during his time with the Portland Winterhawks. He posted a .921 save percentage leading up to his draft and won the title for highest save percentage in the WHL.

In the following season, he stayed in the ballpark of that save percentage (.917) while seeing his workload was nearly doubled, and it was no doubt that fatigue must have set in when Portland was ejected from the playoffs after a mere 4 games.

Since his junior days, Hill has participated in 45 professional hockey games, providing some ok numbers. He has shown the skill and poise to continue taking steps towards becoming an NHL goaltender, but he isn’t there yet.

The pace and skill of the American Hockey League seemed a little heavy for Hill last season, but goaltenders are notoriously tricky and sometimes the adjustment period to professional skaters and shooters from amateur takes some pace adjustment.

Hill’s difficulty in Tucson wasn’t all on him though, as Tucson’s late season trades and nose dive in the standings, due to their top scorers taking stints with the Coyotes, decimated the roster skating in from of him. Hill, none the less, backstopped them to a decent tune that continued to inspire confidence within the organization.

What does the future hold for Adin Hill?:

Coming up to this season, Adin Hill has been thought of as a blue-chip goaltending prospect, the one many inside player developments see as the netminder of the future.

Yet, the mantra around goaltenders remains. Goaltending prospects are ‘voodoo’. They can be good one year, and flop the next, or be average, then suddenly see the light. Suddenly having pressure from below, Hill could use some flashes of light this season if he wants to continue to be the blue-chip the organization reveres him as.

That pressure may get a little heavier this year. The Coyotes signed Hunter Miska to an ELC over the offseason, a goalie who led UM-Duluth to a long run in the NCAA playoffs, and acquired Merrick Madsen, another talented NCAA goaltender from Harvard. Both appear to have flashes of NHL-level talent in their futures.

Moreover, the Coyotes took a chance on acquiring Antti Raanta while making sure to leave room for Louis Domingue to take more starts. The NHL club is looking to experiment with long term goaltending options. Neither goalie at the NHL level is under contract past next season, so there is plenty of flexibility.

A door is opening and Hill can force it even wider if he takes that next step.

Adin Hill will be good this season. He will be more adjusted to professional shooters and pace of play, but it’s up to him to begin taking those steps in goaltending development that define whether that voodoo sets in earlier, later, or not at all.

If Hill finds a way to take that next small but important step, re-lives that pre-draft glory from Portland and find ways to develop his play that set him apart from competition both above and below him, the sky can and will be the limit for him.