Payton Matsui Made A Big Impression On The Aberdeen Wings

Karl’s TV & Appliance Athlete of the Week
Aberdeen Wings Forward & NAHL Forward Of the Year
Published: Jun. 28, 2021 at 9:49 PM CDT
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ABERDEEN, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Payton Matsui is used to being doubted because of his 5′8′' frame.

“I mean I’ve had to do that all my entire life. I’ve always been the small guy, chip on my shoulder.” Aberdeen Wings Forward Payton Matsui says.

Where others had questions, Scott Langer saw answers when he drafted the Lakeville, Minnesota native to join the Aberdeen Wings this season.

“He’s the first one over the boards ready to make a play. But he’s just a gamer. He loves the competition and he came from a place that didn’t win a whole lot of games last year and he’s certainly enjoying winning hockey games.” Aberdeen Wings Head Coach Scott Langer says.

“Having a chip on my shoulder, he knew that, he believed in me and, I mean, I just tried to do the best I could for this team.” Matsui says.

And it paid off with Payton scoring 27 goals and 38 assists, leading the NAHL with 65 points en route to being named forward of the year.

“He’s a special player. When we need a difference maker to make a play or to score a big goal it just seems like Payton Matsui has been the guy that’s name has come up.” Langer says.

Payton might still have that chip on his shoulder as he heads to college at Alaska-Fairbanks, it just might not be as big after what he learned during his year in Aberdeen.

“Winning culture. I think I’m going to go in there knowing how to win. Obviously we couldn’t get it done one last time but I’m going to bring that with me wherever I go now. I don’t think of myself as a selfish player. I do it all for the team.” Payton says.>

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