Morgan Rielly Scouting Report

23 Mar

Morgan Rielly

With Toronto’s next golden boy starting his professional career on Friday night, many fan are wondering what they can expect with Morgan Rielly, here at LeafHero we’ll look at a break down of everything you need to know about the  Rielly becoming.


Position:
 Defense
Date of birth: 03/09/1994
Place of birth: West Vancouver, BC
Height: 6’0”
Weight: 190
Shoots: Left
Drafted: First round, fifth overall in 2012 by Toronto
Career Highlights:

  • Drafted 2nd overall in 2009 WHL Bantam draft.
  • Gold medal at 2011 Ivan Hlinka (U-18) tournament
  • Represented Canada at 2012 World Juniors
  • WHL Eastern Conference Defenceman Of The Year 2012/2013
  •  WHL Eastern Conference First All-Star team 2013/2013

Strengths:

  • Excellent offensive instincts
  • Explosive skating
  • Elite puck-handler
  • Excellent first pass
  • Intelligent in own end
  • Able to control pace of the game in both ends

Weaknesses:

  • Lacks any physical presence
  • Sleight and is susceptible to being out-muscled by larger forwards.
  • Struggles in maintaining control of his man and appears to be lost at times in defensive zone coverage

Quotes on Rielly:

“Rielly is a tremendous skater and has exceptional agility. His ability to rush the puck might be unmatched in this draft and he does a great job of eluding defenders and working his way up the ice with great vision. Rielly also moves the puck with strong poise and does a great job of identifying passing lanes and breaking down the defense.”
– www.thescoutingreport.org

“Rielly projects to be a playmaking, power play quarterback in the NHL, as he possesses the necessary poise, patience and vision with the puck. He also has the right dosage of speed, agility, mobility and puckhandling skills that allow him to join an offensive attack and make end-to-end rushes.”
– Tony MacDonald, Carolina Hurricanes director of amateur scouting

“A gifted offensive defenseman that has the ability to generate offense in any situation. Shows the potential to be first pairing NHL defenseman and top end power play quarter back. He can create offensive opportunities with a excellent first pass and disrupt any manner of fore-check a team sends his way. His intelligence and skating ability will allow him to move the puck and rush the puck with equal efficiency. He will need time to develop his physical strength for his defensive game to handle NHL forwards. He will need an extra year of development at the junior or AHL level to make up for the lost time due to his knee injury. He did not miss a beat or any quickness or lateral movement after the knee injury. He seemed confident and did not hesitate to play his style upon his return. I consider him the purist offensive defenseman in the draft and should develop into a top pairing defenseman in the NHL.”
– The Art Of Scouting

“Rielly has better hands than many forwards in the 2012 class”
– McKeen’s 2012 Draft guide

“I’ve seen Rielly do things on the ice that nobody else was doing. I saw him make those little passes to guys who weren’t expecting the puck to get there. He’s the type of player who can lead the rush and he’ll be the first guy back. I think his creativity makes him one of the top players in the league. He’s like a chess player; he’s thinking one or two moves ahead. He sees stuff coming that a lot of players don’t see.
– NHL Central Scouting’s Blair MacDonald

“He has a high hockey IQ, high compete level, [he makes] smart decisions, the future is very bright for him”
– Brian Burke, Anaheim ducks scout and former Leafs general manager

“Offensively, Rielly is the most skilled defenseman of the 2012 draft class. His explosive and dynamic skating allows him to rush the puck up the ice and gain the offensive zone with ease. His exceptional vision and passing along with this skating make him a lethal offensive asset on the back end. On the powerplay is where Morgan is especially dangerous. He’s relied upon heavily in Moose Jaw to carry the puck through the neutral zone and gain the offensive line, which he does with relative ease. Once inside the zone, Rielly draws extra attention from penalty killers, often drawing multiple defenders, however his elite skating allows him to be extremely shifty and elusive and he usually has no problem creating space for himself and finding an open teammate for a scoring chance. His shot from the point isn’t particularly powerful, but his mobility allows him to find and create shooting lanes and his shot does get through to the net more often than not.”
Jr. Hockey Recruit

 Comparisons

Brian Campbell – thescoutingreport.org/
Erik Karlsson – Tony MacDonald, Hurricanes head of amateur scouting
Kris Letang – tsn.ca

Conclusion

Morgan Rielly is with out a question the crown jewel of an impressive group of future leaf blue liners. Rielly will join the Marlies to finish the 2012/2013 season, and will rather make the jump next year to Leafs roster or be sent back to the WHL for an extra year of seasoning. Rielly seems like a sure thing to make the NHL as a regular top 4 defensemen with plenty of upside to become a very dangerous two-way defensemen for the Maple Leafs.

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