2008-09: Zack Sill skated in 58 games for Moncton (QMJHL) as a 20-year-old over-age forward. Playing his second season with the Atlantic Division- champion Wildcats, he scored 9 goals with 15 assists and was +10 with 78 PM. Sill scored 4 goals with 1 assist and was +7 with 10 PMs in 10 playoff games for Moncton.
2009-10: Signed by the Pittsburgh Penguins to an AHL contract, Sill played the bulk of the season in the AHL, posting 5 goals, 6 assists, and 48 penalty minutes through 54 games.
2010-11: Sill was a model of consistency for a Baby Penguins squad that saw a great deal of roster changes. In 80 games, he registered 11 goals, 19 assists, 85 penalty minutes and a plus-16 while playing in a third-line shutdown role. At the end of the season, Sill was signed to an entry-level deal.
2011-12: Sill played 68 games for Penguins AHL affiliate Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in his third pro season. Playing primarily in a two-way, checking role he chipped in with 10 goals and 7 assists and was minus-one with 40 penalty minutes. The Penguins reached the second round in the AHL playoffs after finishing second behind Calder Cup champion Norfolk in the East Division. Sill skated in all 12 playoff games and was plus-three with 3 goals and 1 assist.
Sill is a mucker and grinder type who plays a rugged, simple game predicated on winning battles for the puck and finishing all of his checks. He mixes smart defensive play with a healthy dose of sandpaper which can make him difficult to match up against.
Over the past season he has dramatically improved his skating, which has not only helped him improve the other facets of his game, but has elevated him from career minor-leaguer to viable NHL prospect.
Up next he will have to continue to refine his defensive game. He is already a solid presence in his own zone, and is often deployed as a shutdown forward, but if he hopes to carve out a niche as an agitator at the NHL level, continued improvement is necessary.
Offensively he has improved greatly over the past year, part of which can be attributed to stronger skating, but also increased confidence. He'll never be expected to be a major offensive contributor, but should be expected to improve upon his modest totals of 11 goals and 19 assists in 2010-11.
Sill will continue to round out his game at the AHL level though he has the potential to be a bottom-line agitator in the NHL.