CHEK Upside: Wood starring for Victoria Grizzlies in rookie season


For Victoria Grizzlies forward Matthew Wood, the 2021-2022 BCHL season has been a dream.

The 17-year-old rookie who grew up in Nanaimo has made the league highlight reel countless times throughout this year, with his latest moment being a between-the-legs goal on the Alberni Valley Bulldogs.

“Between the legs has been just a little skill everyone likes to practice, everyone likes to do for fun and then I got my opportunity,” says Wood.

In 35 games Wood has amassed 70 points, eclipsing the club’s rookie record formerly held by Alex Newhook, who is now a member of the Colorado Avalanche.

“It means a lot, obviously he had a great rookie year and I just try to use him as kind of a guideline,” says Wood.

“I don’t want to compare myself to anyone but it’s nice to see I’m doing pretty well and just see that there’s possibilities out there.”

For Grizzlies head coach and general manager Craig Didmon, Wood has been a welcome addition to the team’s lineup.

“It’s been fun for one, I mean certainly he’s great to have around the team because he works so hard and wants to get better every day,” says Didmon.

“Obviously Matt he’s learned off the older players, so it’s been a great experience so far.”

Looking ahead Wood is already predicted to be drafted among the top 10 in the 2023 NHL Entry Draft.

“Obviously the end goal is to play in the NHL and have a career and ultimately win the [Stanley] Cup,” says Wood.

“That would be pretty cool.”

Cole SorensonCole Sorenson

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