Mike Matheson

Mike Matheson

30-Year-Old DefensemanD
Montreal Canadiens
2023 Fantasy Outlook
Matheson began the year with an abdominal injury before missing a significant amount of time with a lower-body ailment. All told, he appeared in just 48 games in his first season with the Habs, but was dynamite when healthy, posting eight goals and a career-high 34 points. Matheson served as the quarterback of Montreal's No. 1 power-play unit, averaging 3:11 per game with the man advantage after never seeing more than 1:07 worth of time a man up per game in any of his first six NHL seasons. Matheson's hit and block numbers are middling for a rearguard, but he's again in line for major usage with the Canadiens, making him an intriguing mid-to-late-round target on draft day. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed an eight-year, $39 million contract extension with the Panthers in October of 2017. Traded to the Penguins in September of 2020. Traded to the Canadiens in July of 2022.
Point streak to six games
DMontreal Canadiens
April 12, 2024
Matheson logged an assist, three blocks and one hit in Thursday's 3-2 overtime loss to the Islanders.
ANALYSIS
Matheson continued a remarkable stretch during which he's distributing at an elite level. The defenseman has nine assists during a six-game point streak and 12 helpers over the last eight contests. His career-high 50 assists ranks ninth in the NHL among blueliners.
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NHL Stats
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2023 NHL Game Log
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2022 NHL Game Log
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2023–24 Time On Ice Stats
  • Average Time On Ice:
    25:33
  • Average Power Play TOI:
    3:41
  • Average Short-Handed TOI:
    2:59
 
Ice Time
Power Play
Short-Handed
2021–22
18:48
0:43
0:14
2022–23
24:27
3:11
2:17
2023–24
25:33
3:41
2:59
Canadiens Depth Chart
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Canadiens Power Play Depth Chart
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Mike Matheson See More
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99 days ago
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2022
2021
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
Matheson had the best year of his six-year NHL career a season ago, posting 11 goals and 31 points in 74 games for the Penguins. He added six points in the club's brief seven-game playoff run, although his defensive play against the Rangers in Round 1 wasn't quite as strong. The Penguins dealt Matheson and a draft pick to the Canadiens in July in exchange for Jeff Petry and Ryan Poehling. There's a non-zero chance the 28-year-old Matheson could serve as Montreal's No. 1 defender this coming season, although that may not result in a significant bump in production considering he is joining a considerably weaker team.
Matheson's eight-year, $39 million contract he signed while a member of the Panthers back in 2017 remains a significant long-term anchor for Pittsburgh, but he did play better in his first year with the Penguins in 2020-21 (five goals, 16 points in 44 games) than his last few in Florida. Matheson was a plus player (plus-9 rating) for the first time in his career last season in addition to seeing a significant bump in power-play time (58 seconds per game), although he did nothing (one assist) with that opportunity. The Penguins simply need Matheson to play steady, mistake-free hockey, something he is capable of doing, but not a role that will lead to much fantasy value.
The departure of Jack Johnson means there will need to be a new scapegoat on the blue line in Pittsburgh this season and Matheson has all the attributes to fill that void for the Penguins faithful given his large contract and the fact that he was acquired by trading away folk hero Patric Hornqvist. In his last three seasons, the 25-year-old defender has been able to reach the 20-point threshold, including the 2019-20 campaign in which he did so despite playing in just 59 contests. If Matheson is able to contribute at a similar pace this year, it will no doubt be thanks to new defensive coach Todd Reirden.
Matheson is still waiting for that breakout campaign after recording 27 points in each of the past two seasons. The 6-foot-2, 193-pound blueliner doesn't have any glaring weaknesses but struggled with increased responsibility defensively last season, posting a minus-24 rating. While there's still time for growth at age 25, Matheson's ceiling will be capped by a lack of power-play time -- Keith Yandle and Aaron Ekblad are both locked into significantly larger roles with the extra man.
After a solid 17-point rookie campaign, Matheson took another step forward last year, setting career bests with 10 goals and 27 points. The 6-foot-2 blueliner also played 81 games for the second year in a row and has blocked 255 shots over the last two years. He exceeded 21 minutes of ice time per game, including just over a minute in an increased role on the power play. Matheson has established himself as a key piece to Florida's blue line and signed a huge eight-year contract prior to the start of the 2017-18 season. Health permitting, expect Matheson to preserve his two-way utility on the way to another 25-plus-point output this season.
The Panthers’ patience has really paid off with Matheson, a first-round pick who played three years at Boston College and spent another in the AHL before playing 81 games for Florida this past season. It was surprising how well he adjusted to the NHL as a rookie, averaging 21:03 per game -- third among Florida blueliners behind only Aaron Ekblad and Keith Yandle. Even though Matheson scored just 17 points, he’s known for his high hockey IQ and ability to move the puck. He’s also improved tremendously on the defensive side of the puck, often playing on the first penalty-killing unit. The second season is always tougher for young players, but Matheson is a virtual lock for a top-four role, which should lead to an increase in offensive production.
Florida’s willingness to trade Erik Gudbranson in the offseason likely stemmed from the franchise’s belief in Matheson’s ability to be NHL-ready. The 22-year-old got a small taste of the big leagues with three NHL appearances last season, but spent most of his time accruing eight goals and 12 assists in 54 games for the AHL’s Portland Pirates. While the former Boston College standout does bring some offensive skills to the table, it’s wise to temper expectations early on as he adjusts to the NHL.
After a three-year career at Boston College as a strong two-way defenseman, Matheson made the jump to the AHL for the conclusion of the 2014-15 season. He didn't score a goal and recorded two assists in only five games in the minors, but the Panthers don't believe the lack of professional experience will necessarily preclude him from cracking the Opening Night roster. More than willing to jump into the play on offense, Matheson played alongside another excellent two-way defenseman in Noah Hanifin at BC last season, which at times left them exposed on the back end. As a result, Matheson will need to show he's capable as a shutdown defender before moving up the Panthers' depth chart.
The 20-year-old Matheson is slated to begin his junior season at Boston College in the fall, temporarily leaving his development out of the Panthers’ hands. That being said, the BC coaching staff has certainly guided the first-round selection from 2012 on a favorable career trajectory, with the blueliner earning second-team All-America honors as a sophomore. Matheson, who checks in at a robust 6-foot-2 and 189 pounds, has accumulated 46 points in 74 career games with the Eagles, and seemingly has nothing left to prove at the NCAA level. Once his college campaign concludes, there’s a decent chance Matheson could get some run with the NHL club for a short time late in the season, as the Panthers look to assess their blue line options for 2015-16.
Matheson is coming off a stellar freshman campaign with Boston College, and will probably remain there for at least the 2013-14 season. He racked up eight goals and 17 assists in 36 games with the Golden Eagles, but the 19-year-old probably won't be a factor in the NHL for a couple years. Judging by his most recent campaign though, Matheson is certainly worth keeping an eye on for the future.
More Fantasy News
Two more helpers Sunday
DMontreal Canadiens
April 7, 2024
Matheson notched two assists and five blocked shots in Sunday's 5-2 loss to the Rangers.
ANALYSIS
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Slides two assists in loss
DMontreal Canadiens
April 7, 2024
Matheson had two assists -- one on the power play -- three shots on net, three blocks and one hit in Saturday's 4-2 loss to the Maple Leafs.
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Collects power-play assist
DMontreal Canadiens
April 3, 2024
Matheson had a power-play assist, three shots on net and three blocks in Tuesday's 5-3 win over Florida.
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Pots shorty
DMontreal Canadiens
March 24, 2024
Matheson scored a shorthanded goal and posted a plus-5 rating during Sunday's 5-1 win over the Kraken.
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Sets up power-play strike
DMontreal Canadiens
March 13, 2024
Matheson had a power-play assist, two shots on net and two blocks in Tuesday's 3-0 win over Columbus.
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Latest Fantasy Rumors
Will skip World Championship
DMontreal Canadiens
April 17, 2024
Matheson won't join Team Canada for the IIHF World Championship in May, per RDS.ca.
ANALYSIS
Matheson had 11 goals, 62 points, 58 PIM, 61 hits and 186 blocks in 82 appearances with Montreal this season. After logging at least 75 games for the first time since the 2018-19 campaign, perhaps the 30-year-old felt that it would be better to get some rest ahead of the 2024-25 campaign.
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