2021-22 Team: Swift Current Broncos (WHL)
Date of Birth: September 11, 2004
Place of Birth: Tisdale, SK, Canada
Ht: 6-foot-1 Wt: 165 pounds
Position: Left Wing
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2022 first-year eligible
Connor Hvidston was impressive in his first go-around in the Western Hockey League (WHL) as the 17-year-old Tisdale, SK native finished the season with a solid 13 goals and 32 points in 58 games. Selected 133rd overall by the Broncos in the 2019 WHL Bantam Draft and ninth overall by the Melfort Mustangs in the SJHL Bantam Draft, he played for the Yorkton Maulers U18 AAA team in SMAAAHL during the 2020-21 season where he had 12 points in seven games.
Related: THW’s FREE 2022 NHL Draft Guide
Transitioning to the WHL in 2021-22, he started his career with a bang with his first WHL point in his first WHL game when he recorded an assist in his team’s 2-0 shutout win against the Medicine Hat Tigers on Oct. 1, 2021. He then followed that up with his first goal 18 days later against those same Tigers in a 5-4 overtime loss. Recently named the Broncos’ Rookie of the Year, Hvidston has a nose for the net and a pretty good shot off the rush. He also has some grit to his game.
As one of the youngest players in this draft at 17 years old, it’s no surprise that he’s not ranked by a lot of outlets right now. However, that doesn’t mean he should be looked over as a possible late-round pick. In fact, he should be selected based on his defensive game alone. On a bad team in Swift Current, scouts were impressed with his ability to carry the load in his own zone when the rest of his squad seemed to forget the word “defense”. His offensive game is still a work in progress, but based on the video I saw, his shot and hands around the net could potentially be translated to the pro level at some point. However, it’s difficult to judge based on just one season in the WHL. As such, it’s going to be interesting to see how much he progresses in the coming seasons as he doesn’t turn 18 until mid-September.
Other THW Draft Profiles
Connor Hvidston – NHL Draft Projection
As I mentioned at the outset, Hvidston is not highly thought of in the prospect community right now. However, considering his polished defensive game, he could get some love in the fourth or fifth round. Peter and I have him going later in the fourth at 125th and 111th respectively, so we will see if an NHL team is on the same wavelength as us when the clock starts again on July 8.
“Hvidston is a very well-rounded and thoughtful player. His game builds from the defensive end out, and he is one of the more diligent defensive forwards in the region. He positions himself behind the puck throughout a shift and will never get caught cheating up ice. Hvidston’s defensive conscious is not a trait shared with many of his teammates and as a result he does a lot of the heavy lifting in his own end and sacrifices some potential offense.” – Donesh Mazloum, FC Hockey (from ‘23970 – Swift Current vs. Prince Albert – Connor Hvidston Player Report’, FC Hockey, 6/14/22)
“Hvidston sprints his routes to push back defenders, eliminates sticks to create passing lanes, stops inside space when necessary, works to establish positioning on defenders in front of the net, and moves the puck quickly.” – Mitch Brown, Elite Prospects (from ‘2022 Draft Guide – Connor Hvidston Scouting Report’)
“He’s (Hvidston) physical, diligent, and proactive. With the puck, he’s mostly a straight-line attacker. But he’s a skilled shooter, capable of firing in-stride or loading up a curl-and-drag wrister. And his playmaking flashes are nearly as impressive.” – Mitch Brown, EP Rinkside (from ‘Meet the Team: Canada’s roster for the 2022 U18 World Hockey Championship’, 4/20/22)
- Defensive awareness
- Quick wrist shot
Under Construction (Improvements to Make)
- Offensive game
If Hvidston develops his offensive game a bit more, I put his ceiling as a third-line winger who can play a matchup role like Brandon Hagel or Barclay Goodrow. Even if he doesn’t, his floor is still that of a fourth-line penalty killer whose coach isn’t afraid to throw out at the end of the game when protecting a lead.
Risk – 2/5, Reward – 4/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential
Offence – 5/10, Defence – 8/10
Hvidston played for Team Canada at the IIHF U18 World Championship where he recorded two points in four games along with a plus-1 in the plus/minus column.
Connor Hvidston Statistics
Matthew Zator is a THW freelance writer, media editor, and scout who lives and breathes Vancouver Canucks hockey, the NHL Draft, and prospects in general. He loves talking about young players and their potential. Matthew is a must-read for Canucks fans and fans of the NHL Draft and its prospects. For interview requests or content information, you can follow Matthew through his social media accounts which are listed under his photo at the conclusion of articles like this one about Tyler Motte.