Suds Stories: Quinton Byfields’ hat trick, David Levin’s 3 assists propel Sudbury to Victory over Greyhounds

It was a great return for Quinton Byfield, who scored a natural hat trick in this game. The combo of Byfield and Levin has proved to be one of the league’s best. David Levin displayed his patience with the puck on all three of Byfield’s goals, waiting for passing lanes to become open. Byfield has the offensive awareness to position himself to receive all of Levin’s passes, and Byfield’s wrist shots all of them into the back of the net.

Regarding the actual game, the Wolves won this in dominant fashion. Strong offense, and strong defensive play mixed with a great start from Mitchell Weeks, stopping 24 of 26 shots.

Let’s talk about the key storylines from this game and how they fit the narrative of the Wolves season as they make a playoff push.

Story #1: Quinton Byfield continues to be Sudbury’s Most Valuable Player this Season:

Throughout 36 games this season, Byfield has 29 goals, 41 assists for a total of 70 points. He is averaging a 1.94 PPG this season and is currently one of the youngest 2020 draft-eligible players this season.

Believe it or not, there have been doubters of Byfield’s play.

After playing a fourth-line role with Team Canada at the U-20 World Juniors, Byfield failed to produce a lot of offense. He finished the tournament with 1 assist in 7 games and was a -4 (I am also not a big believer in +/- ).

Being a 17 year old in a tournament that typically is dominated by 19-year-olds is difficult. Alexis Lafreniere even struggled during the 2019 World Juniors and look at how he produced at this past tournament.

Since coming back from the World Juniors, Byfield has 7 goals, 6 assists for 13 points in 6 games. I think it’s safe to say he is dominating the competition.

The most dangerous element of Byfield’s game is his wrist shot. When he finds open lanes in the offensive zone, he is able to shoot the puck in a similar style to Auston Matthews. They both can use defenders to screen the goaltender and they can shoot the puck into any area of the net.

Story #2: David Levin is fantastic at creating Passing Plays in the Offensive Zone

It’s easy to talk about Quinton Byfield and the season he is having. A lot of the goals that Byfield has scored have come from David Levin’s creative decisions with the puck. He’s finding ways to get the puck to one area of the ice and letting Byfield do the rest.

Levin has really taken his offensive abilities to the next level this season. With 20 goals and 37 assists for 57 points, Levin has been the perfect complementary player on his line.

The play on Byfield’s hat trick goal was a very smart play from Levin, who showed a lot of poise with the puck. Instead of firing a shot for a rebound, he waits for Byfield to get into a shooting position and passes it through the stick of the Greyhound defender. Once it reaches Byfield’s stick, the play is over and the goal is scored.

Plays like this are what NHL scouts are looking for when evaluating players with Levin’s skillset.

Story #3: The Wolves depth came through to help secure the Victory

Brad Chenier scored his 21st goal of the season and is really looking comfortable in a Wolves uniform.

Mitchell Weeks, who was struggling for a majority of the season, has been excellent in his last 2 games, allowing 6 goals and saving 62 of 68 shots.

Matej Pekar scored his 20th goal of the season and scored the fourth goal to make sure a Greyhound’s comeback was nearly impossible.

The defense and goaltending have always been the question mark with this team, but if they continue to get strong performances like this, the Wolves will continue to win games. Many believed the team needed to acquire a starting goaltender at the trade deadline, and they didn’t. They believe in the players they currently have.

Question of the Post: Is Quinton Byfield a Top-3 Player in the OHL currently?