had this one circled for a while.
The centerpiece of the' future will get a taste of home on Thursday night, as his childhood-favorite roll into town.
“It definitely means a lot,” Matthews said, according to. “It’s where I grew up, it’s the team I watched.”
Matthews hails from Scottsdale, Ariz., and while he's just 28 games into his NHL career, the 19-year-old is easily the biggest name to come out the area – traditionally considered the opposite of a hockey hotbed.
Despite the small market and the continuous organizational turmoil, however, it was always the Coyotes for Matthews.
"(When I was a kid) it was everything – mini-sticks, jerseys and everything,” he said. “I’ve still got some in my closet. I played for the Jr. Coyotes program growing up a little bit so I have a couple of those old jerseys and stuff hanging around.”
Matthews was first introduced to hockey upon the Coyotes' 1996 arrival in Phoenix, one year before he was born. And as he quickly grows into one of the NHL's brightest stars, it's easy to believe Matthews' presence will continue to grow the game in Southwest USA.
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