Mayfield Makes The Jump

Friday, 04.5.2013 / 9:08 PM ET / News
By Greg Picker
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Mayfield Makes The Jump

Islanders prospect Scott Mayfield is one step closer to fulfilling his lifelong dream of playing in the NHL. The Islanders announced Friday that Mayfield had agreed to terms on a three-year, entry-level deal, and will begin his professional career this week with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

"It’s always been my goal to be a professional hockey player,” Mayfield said moments after inking the deal. “It’s my dream and this gives me the chance to do that and take the next step towards playing in the NHL.”

Mayfield played two years of college hockey at the University of Denver after being selected in the second round, 34thoverall, of the 2011 NHL Draft. The St. Louis, MO native tallied 29 points (seven goals, 22 assists) in 81 career games with the Pioneers. Denver qualified for the 16-team NCAA Tournament during each of Mayfield’s two seasons.

“I love it here at Denver and I couldn’t thank the coaching staff and the organization enough for everything they’ve done for me,” Mayfield said. “But I’m happy to take this next step in my career.”

The 6’4, 203-lb stay-at-home defenseman believes the professional game is more suited towards his style of hockey. His tough, physical style of defense should be well suited for the American Hockey League.

“I definitely play more of a physical, hard-nosed game, and that’s what I want to bring to the professional level now,” Mayfield said. “I do have some offensive upside, but the physicality in the corners and in front of the net is sometimes hindered in college playing against younger players. It’ll be nice to see how that pans out against older players in the AHL.”

After Denver fell to the University of New Hampshire in the NCAA Tournament’s first round, Mayfield will jump right into the playoff push with the Sound Tigers. Following Thursday’s 6-3 victory over Worcester, Bridgeport is just four points out a playoff spot. The former Pioneer is no stranger to crunch-time down the stretch.

“I kind of brought that at the end of the season here at Denver,” Mayfield said. “Now that that’s over I want to keep going and do everything I can to make this team successful and make a push to be in the postseason.”

One player Mayfield will be joining with the Sound Tigers is another former Denver Pioneer in Matt Donovan. Although Donovan and Mayfield’s years at UD didn’t coincide, they are on a similar path. A fourth round pick in 2008, Donovan also signed with the Islanders after his sophomore season. He is now one of the Sound Tigers’ leaders, and in the win against Worcester, became the first d-man in the team’s 1000 game history to record a four-point game (one goal, three assists).

“He’s definitely someone that I will try to emulate in what I do,” Mayfield said about his fellow alum. “If I need help I think he will always be there to offer it to me.”

Mayfield and Donovan have met at Islanders rookie camps and during Donovan’s trips back to the Denver campus.

Mayfield will not make his Sound Tigers debut Saturday night against the rival Connecticut Whale, but when he does step onto the ice at the professional level for the first time, he'll have one less step to go to reach his ultimate goal with the Islanders.

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - NYR 76 48 21 7 231 179 103
2 x - MTL 77 47 22 8 203 174 102
3 x - TBL 78 47 24 7 250 204 101
4 NYI 77 45 27 5 235 215 95
5 PIT 77 42 24 11 211 194 95
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14 CAR 76 28 37 11 176 208 67
15 TOR 78 29 43 6 204 249 64
16 BUF 77 22 47 8 152 258 52

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 77 34 43 -2 77
R. Strome 76 16 32 20 48
K. Okposo 55 16 31 -11 47
F. Nielsen 76 14 28 8 42
B. Nelson 77 19 22 7 41
A. Lee 71 23 16 10 39
J. Bailey 65 15 23 3 38
J. Boychuk 67 8 25 9 33
N. Leddy 73 10 21 14 31
T. Hamonic 67 5 26 16 31
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 36 16 2 .913 2.42
M. Neuvirth 1 3 1 .881 2.94

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