Blaine Byron

by Mark Allan on August 26, 2017

 

Blaine Byron, C

Shoots: L

Height: 6-1

Weight: 185

Born: 1995-02-21

Hometown: Manotick, ON, CAN

Drafted: 2013 by Pittsburgh, 179th Overall

 

Observations:

August 2017 – Florida’s AHL affiliate signed UFA Byron to a one-year AHL contract. A sixth-round (179th overall) pick by the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2013, the center joined the Springfield Thunderbirds after a four-year collegiate stint with the University of Maine, serving as the Black Bears' assistant captain as a senior. The 6-1, 186-pound Byron had a team-high 18 goals and led the Black Bears with 41 points in just 36 games in 2016-17. During four years with Maine, Byron scored 46 goals and added 62 assists for 108 points in 145 NCAA contests, a .71 point-per-game clip. He also was minus-25, not as bad as you’d think considering the Bears hibernated their way to a 24-51-4 record for those four campaigns. Mark Allan

June 2017 – After concluding his four years at the U of Maine with impressive senior stats of 18 goals and 41 points in 36 games, Byron is expected to spurn any contract offers from the Penguins and head to the free-agent market a la Jimmy Vesey. Media speculation centers on Pittsburgh’s recent signing of high-scoring free-agent forward Zach Aston-Reese for Byron’s reluctance to join the Penguins. The 22-year-old might also be looking more broadly at the organization’s startling depth of skilled young forwards and deciding he has a shorter road to the NHL with another franchise. Mark Allan

January 2017 – Byron is having a respectable senior NCAA season at the University of Maine, scoring at a point-per-game clip, although he's minus-7. In fact, he's finished on the wrong side of the +/- ledger each season starting with his sophomore campaign. Pittsburgh might offer the late-round draft choice a contract when he graduates, but he's going to have to pay some minor-league dues before he gets a sniff at the big time. Mark Allan 

October 2016 – Byron is back for his senior year at the University of Maine, which hasn't played an NCAA league game yet this season. Mark Allan

June 2016 – Falling short of his team-leading 27 points in 39 games as a junior with the University of Maine, the creative playmaker nonetheless posted 24 points in 38 games for the Black Bears. In spite of a persistent rumor that he would sign with Pittsburgh, Byron is expected to return for his senior collegiate year. That's just as well because he still doesn't shoot enough (four fewer goals than the previous season) and his slight 172-pound frame would take a pounding from pros. Mark Allan

January 2016 – With five goals goals and seven assists in 21 games in his junior year for the University of Maine, Byron is on pace to virtually repeat his 39-game sophomore stats, with no evidence of progress as a player, certainly not an offensively productive one. Mark Allan

February 2015 – The undersized but creative forward is enjoying a good sophomore season at the University of Maine. The small-town Ontario native is fourth among Black Bears in points after 34 games with 11 goals and 12 assists. He’s minus-2 for the 13-18-3 Bears. Six penalty minutes reflect his disinterest in the physical side of the game. He’s a longshot to make the NHL, but Patrick Kane is just one shining example of a mighty mite whose skill allows him to succeed in the best hockey league on Earth. Mark Allan

August, 2013 – Blaine Byron is a creative, playmaking center. Byron has excellent vision and awareness in the offensive zone; this allows him to control the flow of the offense. He is definitely more of a passer than a shooter, totaling 12 goals and 40 assists last season split between the Kemptville 73s and the Smiths Falls Bears of the CCHL. Seth Brisendine

 

Fantasy Outlook: C

Byron needs to add weight to his slight frame, and improve his decision-making.

  

Footage:

 

   

Buy the latest Fantasy Prospects Report here.