In this week’s edition of the Arizona Coyotes 2022 offseason player reviews, I take a look at forward Travis Boyd. After spending the majority of his career as a depth forward, the chance arose this season for top line minutes with a rebuilding Coyotes team, and he made the most of it. The overall result was establishing himself as a solid top-line player in The Valley.
After totaling a previous career high of 20 points during the 2018-19 season with the Washington Capitals, Boyd would spend the next few seasons bouncing from the American Hockey League (AHL) to other teams before finding a place in Arizona, setting a new career high with 35 points this past season. The 2021-22 campaign was a breakout one for the 28-year-old forward, with the team rewarding him with a two-year contract extension.
Boyd’s Season in Review
Simply put, this past season for Boyd was amazing if you look and see what he accomplished. Despite being placed on the team’s COVID-19 protocol list early in the season, he managed to suit up for 74 games. He set new career highs with 17 goals, 18 assists, and 35 points while building chemistry on the top line with teammate Clayton Keller.
While finding his place in the NHL early in his career as a bottom-six depth player, Boyd proved this season that he’s capable of producing if given top-line minutes and solid linemates. Whether it was on the power play, shorthanded, or at even strength, he proved to be one of the Coyotes’ best players all year. He’s a seasoned veteran who the team was able to rely on this season, whether it be a goal, assist, or a big hit.
What Boyd Can Improve On, Build off Of
Having already earned a contract extension for the next two seasons, Boyd needs to stay focused on building off his breakthrough season, a key area of focus this offseason for the Minnesota native. He needs to avoid regressing back to his former self from past seasons, like in 2018-19 when he recorded a then-career-high 20 points with the Capitals before spending the next two seasons bouncing from the minors to other clubs while spending most nights as a healthy scratch.
While not regressing is the biggest area to focus on this offseason for Boyd, there are parts to his game that he can build off of that will help him remain a top-line role guy in Arizona. For one, he possesses a high level of competitiveness, one that doesn’t go unnoticed by management and coaching. “He is a versatile, skilled centre who has been a great addition to our forward group, and we look forward to having him on our roster next season,” said Coyotes general manager Bill Armstrong after announcing his contract extension.
Boyd’s Next Moves
While the team has plenty of decisions left to make on who to bring back or in this offseason, Boyd will look forward to not having to move for once this summer. “To re-sign down here, it’s obviously huge for my family too. It gives us some stability in our lives for a few years. We all love it here.” Not only is he happy to be here, but the team is also happy to have him back for the next two seasons as well. He has built relationships and chemistry during this past season in Arizona. He will be looked on as one of the team leaders for the next couple of seasons.
While the Coyotes still have a ways to go in terms of stable success, they are slowly growing and building a hopefully exciting future in the desert. While Boyd may not be here once they reach that goal, he still has two more seasons to continue building his game and show that he can be a solid top-six player. At a comfortable 1.75 million dollars per season for the next two years, he won’t cost the Coyotes a hefty price, resulting in a solid payoff, especially if he continues to produce like he did this past year.
The Coyotes are optimistic that Boyd can grow and build off this season. He’s a key contributor that coach André Tourigny believes can sustain this level of success, and management sees it as well.
What do you think of Boyd? Lets us know in the comments section below. Next week is Liam O’Brien
Mr. Evans is originally from Greenville, SC where he currently resides. Mr. Evans has been involved in hockey for the past 18 years now, following the Arizona Coyotes and St. Louis Blues. During his free time, Mr. Evans enjoys spending time with his family and girlfriend as well as being up in the mountains or taking pictures. Prior to joining The Hockey Writers, Mr. Evans previously worked for The Puck Authority, covering the South Carolina Stingrays of the ECHL and FanSided’s Bleedin’ Blue, covering the St. Louis Blues. You can find Mr. Evans on Twitter at @HaynesPEvans.