27-Year-Old Defenseman – Arizona Coyotes
Kevin Connauton Contract Information:
Signed a two-year, $2 million contract with the Coyotes in July 2016.
Connauton (lower body) has been cleared to suit up against the Stars on Tuesday, Sarah McLellan of The Arizona Republic reports.
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RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Kevin Connauton.
Connauton came to the Coyotes in midseason last year, and he performed admirably in a fairly limited role. The 26-year-old will find it tough to carve out a meaningful role on a revamped team that also brought in Alex Goligoski. Still, the 2009 third-round pick totaled five goals and 12 assists last year – four tallies and five helpers with the ‘Yotes – to go along with 60 PIM, which is decent when you consider his unfavorable ice time (16:34 average between Columbus and Arizona). The numbers are certainly not eye-popping, which may leave Connauton unclaimed come draft day, especially without an established pairing coming into the 2016-17 year, but it's worth noting that the former AHL All-Star has intriguing shooting ability from the blue line.
With a number of adjustments happening on the blue line in Dallas, Connauton has the opportunity to take on a much larger role in his sophomore year. He's pencilled in as the Stars' sixth man on the back end and his points-per-60 minutes of play (0.87) suggest that he could expand on his one-goal, seven-assist performance (36 games) last season. But there are no guarantees he'll win that gig given the number of other young defenseman in the Dallas system that are looking to grab that full-time slot. Coach Lindy Ruff seemed to see his potential last season, playing him over veteran Aaron Rome last year. But he'll have to deliver on that potential to earn a regular spot and be worthy of fantasy consideration.
Connauton arrived at the trade deadline last year in a deal that sent Derek Roy to Vancouver and immediately impressed Dallas management with his play for the team's AHL affiliate. He's being mentioned as an option for Dallas' third pairing as training camp nears and his puck moving ability and powerful shot could fit in well on the second power-play unit if he makes the team.
Connauton is one of the Canucks’ top defensive prospects. The 22-year old blueliner totaled 33 points (13 G, 20 A) in his second season at the AHL level. At 6-1 and 195 pounds, Connauton has good size, but he’s not known for being a very physical player. His specialty lies in his offensive skillset, as his booming shot is an ideal fit for the power play. After two seasons in the AHL, Connauton could get a look with the Canucks this year, but he’s still probably a year or two away from being a full-time contributor.
Connauton is fresh off his first season for Manitoba of the AHL with 11 goals, 12 assists and 51 penalty minutes in 73 games. The Canucks' 2009 third-round pick profiles as an offensive-minded blueliner who should be a power-play contributor down the line, but at 21 years old, he'll need some more time honing his skills at the AHL level before getting a legitimate shot in Vancouver.
Connauton was selected by the Canucks in the third round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. He’s an offensive-minded defenseman who thrives on the power play with his big shot. The 20-year-old blueliner showed off those offensive skills in his first season with Vancouver of the WHL, finishing with 72 points (24 G, 48 A) in 69 games. Look for Connauton to get some seasoning at the AHL level, but keeper leagues should already be taking notice of this up-and-coming prospect.
The Canucks selected Connauton in the third round of the 2009 draft. At 6-1, 180, he's a big body who the Canucks think can develop into a solid blueliner. The 19-year-old showed flashes of an offensive game with Western Michigan University last season, totaling 18 points in 40 games. He has already signed with the Vancouver Giants of the WHL for the 2009-10 season and will likely need a few years of seasoning at the lower levels before making a splash with the Canucks.