|Born||January 16, 1991|
Haliburton, Ontario, Canada
|5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)|
200 lb (91 kg; 14 st 4 lb)
|NHL team||Ottawa Senators|
|NHL Draft||3rd overall, 2009|
Matt Duchene (born Matthew Duchene on January 16, 1991 in Haliburton, Ontario, Canada) is a Canadian professional ice hockey centre for the Ottawa Senators in the National Hockey League (NHL). He was selected third overall by Colorado in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.
Playing career[edit | edit source]
Minor[edit | edit source]
Matt grew up playing minor hockey for the OMHA's Central Ontario Wolves (Lindsay, Ontario) of the Eastern AAA League. He also spent his early hockey years playing for his hometown Haliburton Huskies before moving up to the AAA level. In 2006, Matt verbally stated that he was interest in the USA College route and verbally committed to the NCAA. After the 2006-07 season with the Wolves, he was selected in the 1st round of the 2007 OHL Priority Selection by the Brampton Battalion.
Junior[edit | edit source]
Matt played junior in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) in 2007–08, and recorded 30 goals and 50 points in his rookie campaign. The following season, he improved to 79 points in 57 games, then added 26 points in the post-season, helping the Battalion to the J. Ross Robertson Cup Finals, where they were defeated by eventual Memorial Cup champions, the Windsor Spitfires.
Going into the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, Matt was ranked second overall among North American skaters by the NHL Central Scouting Bureau, behind just John Tavares. Swedish defenceman Victor Hedman was also considered a strong candidate with Tavares for the first overall selection.
However, Matt's well-rounded, two-way game garnered him attention for the top pick, as well. After Tavares and Hedman were picked first and second, he was selected third overall by the Colorado Avalanche. Growing up as an Avalanche fan, Matt quickly became a fan favourite after video footage showed him pumping his fist after Hedman was selected second overall to the Tampa Bay Lightning, sealing his fate as an Avalanche draftee.
Having played alongside Vancouver Canucks prospect Cody Hodgson, who had been selected tenth overall the previous year, in Brampton, Matt sought draft advice from him over the course of the season. He has drawn comparisons to such retired NHLers as Steve Yzerman and Joe Sakic as well as current star Mike Richards.
Professional[edit | edit source]
On October 1, 2009, Matt notched his first career NHL point in his Avalanche debut against the San Jose Sharks with an assist on a power play goal by defenceman John-Michael Liles. His first goal came later that month on October 17th against Chris Osgood in a 4–3 shootout win against the Detroit Red Wings. It was announced the next day that Matt would spend the entire season with the Avalanche.
On November 30, 2009, Matt compiled his first two-goal NHL game in a 3–0 shutout victory against the Tampa Bay Lightning. The next game against the Florida Panthers on December 2, 2009, he tallied his second two-goal game and first three-point game of his career, scoring twice against Florida's Scott Clemmensen and assisting on a goal by ]Chris Stewart in a 6–5 shootout loss.
It marked the first time that an 18-year-old recorded back-to-back two-goal games in the NHL since Radek Dvorak did it with Florida in November of 1995. Matt was subsequently selected as the NHL rookie of the month for December of 2009, scoring five goals and eight assists for 13 points in 14 games.
On April 6, 2010, the Avalanche had the opportunity to clinch a playoff berth with a victory against the Vancouver Canucks. Tied 3–3 after overtime, Matt scored the game winning shootout goal against Roberto Luongo to send the Avalanche into the playoffs for the first time since 2008.
He finished his rookie NHL season third on the Avalanche in scoring with 55 points, and second in goals with 24. Among NHL rookies, Matt finished first in points ahead of John Tavares by one and tied with Tavares for first in goals. Matt added three assists in six playoff games as the Avalanche were eliminated by the San Jose Sharks in the opening round. After completion of the season, Matt was selected to the NHL All-Rookie Team and placed third in Calder Trophy voting.
The following season, Matt recorded his first five minute major for fighting, against opponent Vladimír Sobotka of the St. Louis Blues on November 15, 2010. Several months later, he was chosen to participate in his first NHL All-Star Game.
During the contest, Matt became the first player in the NHL All-Star Game history to be awarded a penalty shot when Washington Capitals forward Alexander Ovechkin tossed his stick toward MAtt on a breakaway. Matt's attempt was turned away by Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers.
Soon thereafter, Matt recorded his 100th career NHL point on January 26, 2011, with a goal against Phoenix Coyotes goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov in a 5-2 loss. The goal made him the youngest player in franchise history (including the Quebec Nordiques era) to record the milestone, beating Matt's boyhood idol, Joe Sakic. He finished the season with 67 points and became the youngest player in Avalanche history to lead the team in scoring.
On November 4, 2011, Matt tallied his first career hat trick in a 7-6 overtime loss to the Dallas Stars. This game also marked his first career four-point game. Having missed only 3 games in his previous 2 seasons combined, his third season in the NHL would see only 58 games, tried by left-knee, and later right-ankle injuries.
After the 2011–12 season, Matt confirmed to The Denver Post that after his ankle injury, he played the remaining games of the season hurt, in a desperate bid for the playoffs that ended for the Avs after game 81. He finished his season scoring 28 points with 14 goals.
On June 23, 2012, Matt (as a restricted free agent) agreed to a two-year deal with the Avalanche worth $7 million. With the 2012 NHL lockout in effect, he signed an initial two month contract with Frölunda HC of the Swedish Elitserien on October 2, 2012. He made his début on October 14 in a 4–3 win against Modo Hockey, where he contributed with two assists.
Nearing the completion of his contract with the Indians, it was announced Matt would not be extended and in his final game with Frölunda, he scored the game-winning goal in a 3-1victory over Linköpings HC. Matt was given a standing ovation after the game and finished with 4 goals and 14 points in 19 games.
The following day on December 9, 2012, Matt continued to remain in Europe to sign an one-month contract, with the option for the remainder of the Lockout, with Swiss team HC Ambrì-Piotta of the National League A. He appeared in 4 games producing 5 points over the next month with Ambrì, which was limited by a Spengler Cup selection.
After a tentative agreement to end the NHL lockout was reached, Matt was farewelled by Ambrì fans on January 7, 2013. On July 18, 2013, he and the Colorado Avalanche agreed to a five-year, $30 million contract extension.
International play[edit | edit source]
|Competitor for Canada|
|Gold||2015 Czech Republic|
|Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament|
|IIHF World U18 Championships|
|Competitor for Template:Country data Ontario|
|World U-17 Hockey Challenge|
Matt made his international debut at the 2008 World U-17 Hockey Challenge. He scored 10 points in 6 games to help Team Ontario to a gold medal.
During that same year, he was named to Team Canada's under-18 team for the 2008 IIHF World U18 Championships in April and selected as Captain at the 2008 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament in August and won two more gold medals at those tournaments.
Playing in his second major junior season, Matt took part in Team Canada's junior camp for the 2009 World Junior Championships, but was cut.
Following his rookie season in the NHL, Matt was played for Team Canada's roster for the 2010 IIHF World Championship in Germany. He made his full international debut and recorded a goal and assist in a 5-1 preliminary round win against Italy on May 8, 2010.
Matt finished the tournament with 4 goals for 7 points in 7 games after Canada was eliminated in the quarterfinal by Russia.
Matt was added to Team Canada's World Championship team in 2011 for a second consecutive season, following the Avalanche's failure to make the playoffs. He was unable to repeat his point scoring performance from the previous year, going scoreless in 7 games as Canada finished in 5th place.
After signing a NHL lockout contract in Switzerland with HC Ambrì-Piotta in 2012, Matt was added to Team Canada for the annual Spengler Cup. In four games, he scored 5 points, and was selected as the center to the All-Star Team in helping Canada win the Cup for the first time since 2007.
On January 7, 2014, Matt was named to the Canadian roster for participation at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.
He was initially used as Canada's extra forward or as a healthy scratch in Canada's round robin stage, though after a tournament-ending knee injury to John Tavares suffered in the quarter-finals, he was inserted as the fourth line centre for the tournament semi-final, as well as Canada's gold medal-winning game against Sweden on February 23rd.
At the 2015 World Championships (where Canada won the gold medal for the first time since 2007 with a perfect 10-0 record), Matt finished in a tie for third in scoring with 4 goals and 8 assists.
Career statistics[edit | edit source]
Regular season and playoffs[edit | edit source]
|2006–07||Central Ontario Wolves||OMHA||52||69||37||106||36||—||—||—||—||—|
International[edit | edit source]