2005-06: Garrett Mitchell played for the Regina Pat Canadians in the Saskatchewan midget hockey league and was drafted by the Regina Pats in the second round (33rd overall) of the 2006 WHL Bantam Draft.
2006-07: Mitchell made his WHL debut appearing in four games with the Pats and notching one assist and was -2 with 2 PIM. Mitchell played the bulk of the season with the Pat Canadians in the SJHL and had 1 assist with 4 PIM in four playoff games.
2007-08: Mitchell established himself as a heavy-hitter in his rookie WHL season. In 62 games, he scored 8 goals with 5 assists and was +4 with 73 PIM. Mitchell had 1 goal with 6 PIM and was -3 in 6 playoff games as the Pats fell to Swift Current in the first round. Mitchell played for Canada West at the World U-17 Hockey Challenge and scored 4 goals with 2 assists and 20 PIM in six games.
2008-09: Mitchell was a physical force for Regina in his second season. Mitchell finished with a team-leading 140 PIM while scoring 10 goals with 5 assists; and was -15 in 71 games for the Pats. Regina finished fifth in the East division, winning just 27 games, and missed the WHL playoffs. Mitchell represented Canada at the WJC U-18 tournament and had 1 assist with 6 PIM in a checking line role. He was part of Team Canada for the Ivan Hlinka tournament. Mitchell was ranked 148th among North American skaters in the 2009 NHL Draft by Central Scouting.
2009-10: Mitchell despite lacking big offensive numbers and playing on a last-place Regina squad impressed Washington enough to receive a look-see with AHL Hershey following the WHL season and was tendered a qualifying offer in June to allow the Capitals to retain his rights. Mitchell made his AHL debut and was scoreless with two shots on goal in the Bears’ 3-1 loss to Syracuse on April 6. Mitchell was limited to 57 WHL games after suffering concussion-like symptoms in two separate instances, and scored 15 goals with 16 assists and was -15 with 140 PIM for the Pats.
2010-11: Mitchell made his pro debut with AHL Hershey after captaining the Regina Pats in his fourth WHL season. Mitchell signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the Capitals in March 2011 and in his two games with the Bears he was scoreless and -1 with 5 PMs. In 70 games with Regina, a team that missed the WHL playoffs, Mitchell tied for the team lead with 140 penalty minutes and was -11. He was the team’s third-leading scorer with 18 goals and 34 assists.
2011-12: Mitchell played 65 games for Capitals AHL affiliate Hershey in his first pro season. Playing a hard, two-way game for the Bears, he scored 6 goals with 9 assists and was minus-four with 85 penalty minutes. Hershey reached the playoffs after finishing second in the East Division. Mitchell scored 1 goal and was an even plus/minus with no penalty minutes in the five-game playoff series with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He played two ECHL games with South Carolina and had no points with 7 penalty minutes.
2012-13: Mitchell played in a team-high 75 games for Washington’s AHL affiliate in Hershey in his second pro season. He scored 15 goals with 15 assists and was +6 while finishing second on the Bears with 94 penalty minutes. Hershey finished fourth in the East Division and lost to Atlantic Division champion Providence in a first round playoff series. In five playoff games Mitchell scored 1 goal and had an even plus/minus with 4 penalty minutes.
2013-14: Mitchell skated in 17 games for Capitals’ AHL affiliate Hershey in his third pro season — suffering a season-ending shoulder injury that required surgery in December 2013. He had 2 assists and was -4 with 44 penalty minutes. The Bears finished fourth in the East Division, two points behind Norfolk for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot. Mitchell signed a one-year contract extension with Washington in May 2014.
Mitchell is the epitome of an energy player: he uses his above average skating ability to pressure and pester opponents while providing grit in the rougher areas of the ice. Mitchell’s offensive ability is very limited; the little bits of production he manages are due to his tenacity and willingness to drive into the muck in front of the net. He also contributes by working along the walls, killing penalties and blocking shots when necessary. Though he is not much of a physical player, he has been known to drop the gloves when required.
Mitchell already has four seasons with Hershey of the AHL behind him and looks to be returning for the 2015-16 season. As mentioned in the talent section, his production is very limited and the little he contributes is due more to hard work than skill. Mitchell has taken on a leadership role with the Bears, earning an alternate captaincy. He should continue to provide energy for the Bears going forward, though it appears he has hit his ceiling as a pro.