LD Morgan Rielly (2012, 5th overall, Toronto) II
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04-09-2013, 11:38 PM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Originally Posted by
I disagree with all of them to an extent.
1. He isn't a hard hitting guy, but he'll play physical enough to separate his opponent from the puck and is willing to battle physically along the boards but he won't go out and give big hits or intimidate players. He definitely lacks physical presence, but saying "any" is not true.
2. I wouldn't say Rielly is slight. The guy is 6'1 and 200 lbs, certainly isn't big but is the average size of NHL players, and a little below average for defensemen. He's not weak and can win his share of puck battles, but Rielly uses his stick and positioning to win battles more than his strength.
3. I agree that Morgan does show that he's lost sometimes in his zone coverage, but he usually recovers and are few in between. If there is anything to work on in his game it is d-zone coverage, but it certainly is not bad.
Personally, I think Morgan is ready for the big jump. Guys like him don't really have much more to learn playing junior. The strength that is underrated, but mentioned in that same article, is that Morgan is extremely intelligent at both ends of the ice. He makes the right decision almost all the time, he makes the best option for getting the puck out of the zone, he knows when to rush or when to pinch, he's not reckless offensively, he uses his body and skating to run the opposition into low percentage areas or runs them out of ice.
I think Carlyle is going to have a hard time sending Morgan down if he plays the way he's capable of playing. Carlyle will find a role for him next year imo, albeit a sheltered role.
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