For the second consecutive season, Barrett Hayton has made the Arizona Coyotes roster and now is his time to really shine.
Last season, Hayton was the surprise inclusion on the Coyotes roster but ultimately did not appear in an NHL game and returned to the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds for further seasoning in the OHL.
Upon his return in the Soo, Hayton was handed the coveted captain's 'C' and improved his offensive production greatly over his draft year.
In just 39 regular season games, Hayton scored 26 goals and had 66 total points - six more points than he had in 60 games just one season prior.
Hayton also featured for Team Canada at the World Junior Championships, registering four assists in five games.
After such an impressive season in juniors, Hayton has stepped up and impressed Coyotes management enough to give him another shot at sticking with the NHL club.
The Coyotes have the luxury of testing Hayton out for nine games before deciding on their 2018 5th overall pick.
Hayton will be given every opportunity to impress as sending him back to juniors, the team's only other option, would do little to further his development.
Third line minutes would be a good level to test the Kitchener, Ontario native, putting him in a position to truly show what he is capable of at just 19 years old.
If Hayton remains with the NHL club it will be a significant moment for the player, whom a number of people were surprised was chosen so highly in his draft.
It’s official Barrett Hayton has made the team.
Also, forward and 2018 first-round pick Barrett Hayton has made the Coyotes roster for opening night. "We expect Barrett to contribute to our team this year," Chayka said.— Craig Morgan (@craigsmorgan) October 1, 2019