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About Last Season: Matt Tennyson Performance Review and Grade

The free agent acquisition of last summer provided the Hurricanes with depth on the blue line. Will he be donning the Hurricanes red next season?

Jamie Kellner

Matt Tennyson: 2016-17 By the Numbers

  • Age: 27
  • NHL Seasons: 4
  • Games Played: 45
  • Scoring: 0 goals, 6 assists, 6 points
  • Ice Time per Game: 13:17 in all situations, 12:56 ES, 0:02 PP, 0:18 PK
  • 5-on-5 Stats: 46.98% CF, 36.5% GF
  • Contract Status: Completed a one-year, $675,000 contract.

Making the Grade

Matt Tennyson joined the Hurricanes on July 3rd, 2016, when he signed a one-year, two-way deal. Tennyson was signed in Carolina as a depth defenseman on a roster that was - and still is - finishing up a rebuild. The undrafted defenseman appeared in 45 games this season, notching six points in total but failing to find the back of the net once, despite recording a hat trick for the Charlotte Checkers in November.

So how did he play over the course of the season? Tennyson finished second to last in CF% among Canes defensemen (excluding Jakub Nakladal, who played only 3 games), but 47% really isn’t that bad for a fringe NHL defenseman. Tennyson finished the season just third on the list in hits per games played among Carolina defensemen, behind Klas Dahlbeck and Justin Faulk, indicating that he brings some desired grit in his game as a bottom pairing NHL defenseman.

What we have in Tennyson is a bottom pairing, stay at home defenseman who hadn’t played 30 games in an NHL season until he landed with the Hurricanes. He was playing about 13 minutes a night, ahead of only Ryan Murphy in ice time per games played this season. For a defender acquired on a one-year, two-way deal with minimal expectations, he performed just fine.

Whether or not Tennyson will remain in Carolina next year is uncertain, as a lot of it depends on how Canes GM Ron Francis decides to handle the expansion draft. However, with the likes of Haydn Fleury, Roland McKeown and others approaching their shot at the NHL, it seems probable that Tennyson’s days in Carolina are over.


How do you grade Matt Tennyson’s 2016-17 season?

This poll is closed

  • 0%
    A - significantly outperformed expectations
    (1 vote)
  • 10%
    B - outperformed expectations
    (16 votes)
  • 60%
    C - met expectations
    (95 votes)
  • 24%
    D - underperformed expectations
    (39 votes)
  • 3%
    F - significantly underperformed expectations
    (6 votes)
157 votes total Vote Now