27-Year-Old Right Wing – Buffalo Sabres
Matt D'Agostini Contract Information:
Signed a one-year, $550,000 contract with the Penguins in July 2013.
D’Agostini missed Wednesday’s practice due to illness, Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News reports.
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Age is determined on October 1st of each season.
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|View Matt D'Agostini's Full Game Log|
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Matt D'Agostini: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
D'Agostini dropped off from his 20-goal season in 2010-11 to just nine last season while seeing time mostly on the bottom two lines. The drop-off was predictable. D'Agostini's breakout season came when the Blues were hit hard by injuries, putting him in a position to produce. With a healthier and deeper cast of forwards last season, his minutes and role changed. D'Agostini still has that booming shot so he's dangerous whenever on the ice, but he's not going to usurp a top-six spot from any of the players slated to be there, unless there's an underperformer in the bunch -- say, Chris Stewart. And with the arrival of Vladimir Tarasenko from the KHL, third line may be a reach for D'Agostini this season.
D’Agostini was a nice surprise for the Blues in 2010-11, forcing the team to re-sign him in the offseason coming off a breakout 21-goal, 25-assist season. When injuries hit, D’Agostini was forced to play top-six minutes and was part of the power play, showing some scoring ability and a booming shot. He also turned around a minus-32 the past two seasons to register a plus-8. He’s likely to open the season on the third line where the Blues could use a little scoring touch, but repeating last season’s success may be tough if he’s forced to play third-line minutes all season long.
A somewhat promising 2008-09 season (12 goals) left us thinking D'Agostini might make a jump last season, but he started slow and the Canadiens gave up on him. Playing less than 10 minutes a game for Montreal, D'Agostini managed to place third on the team at minus-12. The Habs flipped him to St. Louis late in the year, but he saw little action with the Blues. St. Louis, lacking organizational depth at forward, re-signed D'Agostini to a one-year deal in the offseason, and he'll likely make the team as a fourth-liner. At 24, it's not over for him but the Blues have several other young forwards they're committed to developing before D'Agostini.
D’Agostini put up decent numbers in his first substantial stint in the NHL last season in Montreal. He scored 12 goals and added nine helpers, but managed just a minus-17 rating in 53 games. The 22-year-old right-winger should see more playing time with the core of last season’s team gone, so don’t be surprised if he puts up similar if not better numbers this season.
The Habs love his grit, something of which they're in short supply. D'Agostini plays a smart technical game. He's rarely caught out of position. He's also got good speed, something he'll need if he wants to be a top-six forward one day for the Habs. In fact, the 21-year-old winger could see top-nine duty as soon as this year if he has a great training camp. Unfortunately, Max Pacioretty had a better camp and D'Agostini is back in Hamilton of the AHL to start the 2008-09 season. D'Agostini had 53 points in 76 games for Hamilton last year.