The advantages and disadvantages of Barrett Hayton playing with the Arizona Coyotes

BUFFALO, NY - OCTOBER 28: Barrett Hayton #29 of the Arizona Coyotes warms before an NHL game against the Buffalo Sabres on October 28, 2019 at KeyBank Center in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images)
BUFFALO, NY - OCTOBER 28: Barrett Hayton #29 of the Arizona Coyotes warms before an NHL game against the Buffalo Sabres on October 28, 2019 at KeyBank Center in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images) /
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Barrett Hayton was drafted 5th overall in the 2018 NHL draft. Hayton is only 18 years old, and already he is turning heads in the NHL.

Hayton spent last season in the OHL, wherein 39 games he put up 26 goals, 40 assists, and 66 points. Hayton got a lot done last year in the OHL, but would he benefit from returning for another year

Barrett Hayton is showing he can play in the NHL. Through 8 games this year he has 4 points, and he continues to turn heads with great assists and great zone entries. I think Hayton could be a useful asset to the team. Hayton can also learn from the team.

Barrett Hayton can play alongside players like Christian Dvorak, Nick Schmaltz, and Clayton Keller in the NHL. He can learn alongside players that have been where he is. Clayton Keller, the former 7th overall pick in 2016, did not break into the league until a year after his draft. That matches up to where Hayton is at. In Keller’s first season he put up 65 points through all 82 games, maybe Hayton can do something similar.

If Hayton plays in the NHL he will play more meaningful minutes then if he played back in the OHL for another year. Think about the critical minutes Hayton can play when the Coyotes are down a goal or tied late in a game. I am not saying that Hayton is going to be playing top 6 minutes a night in and night out, but the argument still remains that the Coyotes need him more than he needs the OHL for another year.

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The last 3 games Hayton has averaged more than 13 minutes of ice time a night, he is playing the role the Coyotes need him to fill, but there are still some negatives with having Hayton in the NHL.

If Barrett Hayton were to play more than 9 games in the NHL his contract would officially kick in, meaning the Coyotes will have to deal with him being a free agent sooner rather than later. If the Coyotes want to keep him here they better be certain Hayton is the guy for the job in Arizona.

Another key reason to maybe give Hayton another year is so that he does not burn out. Clayton Keller played great in his first season, but since then his stats have slowly trickled back down to earth, and last season he only put up 47 points. If Hayton goes back to the OHL he can continue to progress every night, rather than being a 13th forward in the NHL like he is now.

If the Coyotes keep Hayton in the NHL they also risk him falling to an injury from one of the bigger players. Hayton is only 6 foot 1 and has not yet cracked 200 pounds. Do we want to see him get hit by a player like Ryan Reaves or Ryan Getzlaf?

Arizona plays a style of play that does not focus on outhitting opponents if Hayton is with the Coyotes he can be a target for other teams to injure. Just look at the hit Cale Makar put on Hayton earlier in the season.

The bottom line is that if the Arizona Coyotes feel that Hayton can make a difference on the NHL roster he will stay up in Arizona. However, if they are only going to use him as a 13th forward maybe they should send him back to the OHL so he can learn and play a lot of hockey, compared to 13 minutes every 3 games.

Either way, we will know soon as Hayton can only play in one more game before the Coyotes are forced to either keep him in the NHL or send him back to the OHL. Where would you like to see Hayton this year?