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Jr. Coyotes alum, Phoenix native Knies wraps season at Minnesota, signs NHL contract with Maple Leafs


Minnesota sophomore forward Matthew Knies has signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs and will forego his final two years of college eligibility.

Knies will join Toronto immediately.

Knies was a second-round pick (57th overall) of the Maple Leafs in the 2021 NHL Draft and was a Hobey Baker Memorial Award Hat Trick finalist and Big Ten conference player of the year in 2022-23, recording 42 points on 21 goals and 21 assists, including an NCAA-best seven game-winning goals.

The Phoenix native was named to the all-Big Ten first team as a sophomore after landing on the second team in his freshman season. He recorded 12 multi-point games with four three-point efforts for the Gophers in 2022-23.

Knies averaged more than a point per game in his two-year Minnesota career, totaling 75 points (36 goals, 39 assists) during 73 games. He tallied 33 points as a freshman and was a dominant force late in the year when he was named the most outstanding player of the Worcester Regional and earned a spot on the NCAA Northeast Regional all-tournament team.

He was part of the most prolific line in college hockey during the 2022-23 campaign with Logan Cooley (an Arizona Coyotes prospect) and Jimmy Snuggerud as the trio combined for 152 points. The entire line was held off the scoresheet in just five games played this season, but only three times over the final four months of the campaign.

Back home, Knies skated for the Jr. Coyotes.

Photo/Brad Rempel

(April 9, 2023)

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