Welcome back to Top Shelf Prospects, the daily column that brings you the next crop of professional hockey players. Each day I will bring you a new player profile or topical article in the lead-up to the 2021 NHL Draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow me on Twitter, and spread the word for the site that will bring you analytical and critical profiles and scouting reports! Last Word On Hockey Prospects is your new headquarters for everything “2021 NHL Draft”! We have a complete listing of our draft articles here. Today we bring you our Ayrton Martino Scouting Report.
Drafted by the Guelph Storm in the 2018 OHL Draft, Toronto native Ayrton Martino instead opted to play for the St. Michael’s Buzzers in the OJHL to maintain NCAA Eligibility. However, with the pandemic wreaking havoc on the OJHL season, he choose to play in B.C. for Chilliwack. When that season was also delayed, he went to the USHL to play for the Omaha Lancers. In 38 games Martino scored 18 goals and 56 points. He also played two playoff games but was held off the scoresheet. Martino is committed to playing for the Clarkson University Golden Knights next season.
In 2019-20, Martino put up 29 goals and 79 points in 48 games with the Buzzers. He added two goals and six points in four playoff games before the season was cut short. Martino was named to the OJHL Second All-Star Team. Martino won a silver medal at the World Junior A Hockey Challenge. He scored five points in five games for Team Canada White. In 2018-19 he put up 10 goals and 42 points in 49 games with the Buzzers. Martino also added two goals and 10 points in 11 playoff games.
Ayrton Martino Scouting Report
Left Wing — shoots Left
Born September 28th 2002 — Toronto, Ontario
Height 5’10” — Weight 170 lbs [178 cm/77 kg]
Martino is an outstanding skater. His stride is nearly textbook perfect and this leads to great speed as well as outstanding acceleration. His ability to change speeds also helps him to avoid defenders and create space. Once he gets a step on a defender, Martino can quickly pull away. This creates a ton of breakaways and odd-man rushes. His agility and edgework are also very good. Martino gains speed out of his turns and his quick changes of direction can leave an opponent flat-footed. They also help to create passing and shooting lanes in the offensive zone. He can also avoid defenders both with and without the puck.
Martino is strong on his skates as well. He has a powerful stride which helps him to fight through checks. He is also good on the boards. Martino is able to protect the puck while working down low on the cycle. He gets in quickly on the forecheck and creates turnovers. He also wins plenty of battles in front of the net. This should continue to improve as he matures and gets stronger.
Martino has high-end offensive skills. As mentioned, Martino’s speed is a real threat and helps him to generate breakaways and odd-man rushes. He has the soft hands to finish those plays. He also has a powerful wrist shot and snapshot. His quick hands allow him to change the angle of his release and beat goaltenders. Martino is also an outstanding playmaker. He has a high-end vision as well as excellent passing skills. Martino protects the puck well in the offensive zone, cycling and creating time for his teammates to get open. When they do, he has the passing skills to get the puck through tight areas and set up a scoring chance. Martino is extremely creative and his one-on-one skills create passing and shooting lanes. He is not afraid to play in dirty areas of the ice. Martino often cuts to the net with or without the puck.
There are some issues though. His stickhandling is good and helps him to avoid defenders as well as enter the neutral zone with possession at the USHL level. It also helps him to protect the puck in the offensive zone as he cycles the puck. However, it can continue to be improved. Martino sometimes loses control of the puck when moving at top speed, or he needs to slow down to better control it. He could also stand to improve the accuracy on his shots. Martino can have shots blocked or miss the net a bit too often. If he can improve these two areas of his game, even just a little, he can be an even more dynamic offensive threat.
Martino is a strong defensive player as well. He uses his hockey IQ to read the play and anticipate where an opponent may go with the puck. This helps him to create turnovers by intercepting passes. Once a turnover is created, he is quick to move the puck up the ice to create offensive chances. However, there are times when he is a bit too quick to move up the ice without the puck, leaving his teammates in a tough situation in the defensive end. He also backchecks effectively. Martino supports the defence down low and brings good backpressure against the rush. A lack of size can be an issue though and he sometimes struggles to contain bigger and stronger opponents.
Projection and Comparison
Martino has the offensive skill to develop into a top-six winger if he can continue to improve those skills he can develop into a top-six winger at the NHL level. He needs to be a bit more accurate with his shot as well as continue to work on his puck handling while moving at top speed. He can also continue to improve his strength and defensive game. Martino will have time to focus on improving these skills with plenty of practice time between games at the NCAA level. Martino’s game is reminiscent of Alex Tanguay. However, this is a stylistic comparison only and not one based on his skill and ability.
The following is a compilation of some of the highlight packages and features of Ayrton Martino that are available on youtube and twitter.
We have no words.
— St Michael's Buzzers (@stmbuzzers) January 12, 2020
Beautiful fake one-timer play to set-up Ayrton Martino @OmahaLancers (#23)!🚨
— Dylan Krill (@dylan_krill) March 21, 2021
How does playing offensively help you think defensively? How about the other way around? @OmahaLancers forward Ayrton Martino talks a bit about that during my interview with the #2021NHLDraft prospect! Full interview on the @DobberDraftCast YT Page: https://t.co/iQjwjbxfDs pic.twitter.com/KipwqawiwW
— Tony Ferrari (@theTonyFerrari) February 25, 2021
Ayrton Martino @OmahaLancers (#23) now has 18 points (8G,10A) in his last 9 games!🔥
— Dylan Krill (@dylan_krill) March 14, 2021
Ayrton Martino (#2021NHLDraft) is one of the silkiest offensive players in the draft.
The goal here is a nice shot but that slippery little pass on the give-and-go was just *chef kiss* pic.twitter.com/OkMLNHpLqW
— Tony Ferrari (@theTonyFerrari) March 11, 2021
#USHL: LHD Ethan Edwards (NJD 4th/2020) is a happy camper after his wrister snuck through a screen in host Sioux City's 4-2 win over Omaha. The Michigan commit now has 2 goals and 7 assists in 26 games.
LW Ayrton Martino (Ranked No. 39) picked up a neat primary assist for Omaha. pic.twitter.com/xf81UOhR6t
— Steve Kournianos (@TheDraftAnalyst) February 10, 2021
Ayrton Martino’s @OmahaLancers (#23) point streak extends to 15 points (7G,8A) in 8 games
— Dylan Krill (@dylan_krill) March 13, 2021
THREAD: Many fans have asked about the 2021 draft and who the Bruins should pick at No. 20 OA. Ayrton Martino would be my selection, even in that slot. Martino, No. 23 in white, is a dynamic, creative forward that wants the puck on his stick. #NHLBruins pic.twitter.com/TpnwQ5BH1K
— Bruins Network (@BruinsNetwork) June 12, 2021
Ayrton Martino’s first of the preseason! Lyons and Krys with the helpers.
— Chilliwack Chiefs (@Chiefs_Hockey) November 8, 2020
— St Michael's Buzzers (@stmbuzzers) November 24, 2019
— St Michael's Buzzers (@stmbuzzers) November 24, 2019
🚨Ayrton Martino blasts the puck from the point to make it a 5 goal lead🚨 pic.twitter.com/zWA3NC0pcz
— Omaha Lancers (@OmahaLancers) March 21, 2021
Ayrton Martino – RW Chilliwack
— 🌬Joel Henderson💨 (@dathockeydoe) October 31, 2020
NICK CHERKOWSKI BURIES IT!
With some help from his friends Ayrton Martino & Ethan Bowen🚨
— Chilliwack Chiefs (@Chiefs_Hockey) October 3, 2020
Ayrton Martino's bread and butter is quick, calculated passes that, to most, look like throwaways. But it feels like he knows what his teammates want to do most of the time and it works. #NHLDraft pic.twitter.com/oYOXep2YAX
— Steven Ellis (@StevenEllisTHN) November 9, 2020
Enter #2021NHLDraft eligible Ayrton Martino (#23), a dynamo offensively, moves really well off the puck to give himself high % scoring chances. Excellent vision and creativity lends itself well to playmaking. Uses an unbelievable set of hands to freeze defenders. @ClarksonMHockey pic.twitter.com/aidAO7dVVZ
— Joey Padmanabhan (@joeypad2) May 26, 2021
Making the correct decision can affect the game exponentially. Incredible IQ and skill from Ayrton Martino (@Chiefs_Hockey). 1v5=no chance to enter/chip to recover puck & his team is changing. Reloads with confidence, draws 3 players to him creating odd man rush for his own team pic.twitter.com/X5XAYrd2dU
— Connor Cadaret (@Caddy1414) November 9, 2020
Of all the fantastic offensive clips Ayrton Martino. My favorite of his involves the other end of the ice. His hustle and awareness of how to best position his body to save the puck are remarkable. #USHL #2021NHLDraft pic.twitter.com/GaSLdg1qF5
— John Gove (@PodStreetGove) April 14, 2021
For as skilled as he is, Ayrton Martino is equally impressive away from the puck. He excels in pursuit and is always looking to force turnovers to help his team. Terrific forecheck from him here, as he comes up with the steal and nearly sets up a goal pic.twitter.com/X2Uupf54eX
— OHL Prospects (@BrockOtten) December 10, 2020
— Brandon Holmes (@BHolmes_Hockey) March 2, 2021
— Tony Ferrari (@theTonyFerrari) March 19, 2021
Come back tomorrow for our latest NHL Draft article.
Ayrton Martino Scouting Report Main Photo:
Buzzers Alumni and NHL Draft eligible 02’ F Ayrton Martino finished in the @USHL Top 5 in Pt/G (1.47). In 38gp Ayrton registered 56pts (20 ppp) playing in all situations for the @OmahaLancers. Best of luck to Ayrton and Omaha as they begin playoffs on Saturday. @ClarksonMHockey pic.twitter.com/zmVUzJfYyb
— Brendan Kurnik (@BrendanKurnik) April 30, 2021