Thread: Prospect Info: Leafs Morgan Rielly discussion.
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10-16-2012, 12:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Grant View Post
Rielly does seem to be doing good. Let's say he does make the team. Gardiner has been great, and Phaneuf is our best defenseman. Where would you slot in Liles assuming Rielly makes the team right away? I like Liles and all but he seems to be getting pushed out by our younger guys fast. I liked the signing of him at the time, but in hindsight (that's how we always measure things right?) it seems like it wasn't needed.
I really don't think Rielly makes the team this year (if there even is a season), but he could challenge for a spot next year. Rielly, Gardiner, Gunnarsson and Liles are all left dmen, so he'll be competing with that group (as opposed to our dmen who play on the right side, like Phaneuf, Franson and Komi). Gardiner is a long term piece, so if Rielly is going to take someone's spot, it'll be Gunnarsson's or Liles'. Gunnarsson is much younger, and quite a bit better defensively, I think he'll be a better guy to keep around on a team that has many offensive dmen, but a shortage of defensive dmen. I think that, when the time comes, Rielly will take Liles' spot, and we'll just trade JML.

Lineup when Rielly first enters the NHL (probably 2013/14 or 2014/15):
Gunnarsson - Phaneuf
Gardiner - xxx
Rielly - xxx

Lineup once Rielly gets established/comfortable in the NHL:
Rielly - Phaneuf
Gardiner - xxx
Gunnarsson - xxx

(side note, I believe Percy, Blacker and Finn all play LD as well, we could have quite the logjam at LD in the future with Rielly, Gardiner, Gunnarsson, Liles, Percy, Blacker and Finn. Hopefully some of these guys can switch to the right side, otherwise that's 7 quality players/prospects competing for 3 spots)

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