Well, well, well, look what the ‘Draft’ blew in for your beloved Toronto Maple Leafs on Draft Night 2012!
As the NHL teams ahead of the Leafs came forward and picked who we all thought would go in the order that they did (Rienhart, maybe a little high but still a good pick for NYI) it finally came time for BB and his crew to step forward and select the 5th round pick of these 2012 NHL Draft.
Who would it be? Would the ‘Blue and White’ go for the big center man that they really need or bring in another defence man to go along with an already ‘heavy’ talented blue line? Questions to ponder while the ‘The Big Guy’ strides up to the microphone.
‘The Toronto Maple Leafs would like to thank the City of Pittsburgh and the Team of the Pittsburgh Penguins on their hosting the 2012 Draft and also Congratulations to the LA Kings for winning the Stanley Cup.’ ( Ok Burkie get on with it! A man that isn’t afraid of the mic for sure!)
‘The Toronto Maple Leafs are proud to pick from the Moose Jaw Warriors, Morgan Rielly.’
Where’s the Big Center man that you were to pick Burkie? What’s this all about picking another defence man, come on! (By the way if you weren’t watching the Draft, 8 out of the top 10 picks were defence men, unbelievable really.)
So another draft comes and goes and the Leafs have no center man to play with our Phil ‘The Thrill’ Kessel or just maybe Burkie has something up his sleeve for the future we just don’t know about (man I’m hoping he does!)
So the Leafs picked this kid out of the west who by the way is a very talented and outstanding defence man, but was injured last year after the first 18 games of the WHL season with a torn ACL. Rielly (remember i before e rule here!) was on a point per game pace with the 18 points (3-15-18) before the freak injury. He returned on April 20th, 2012 for the Moose Jaws playoffs and recorded 3 assists in 5 playoff games.
‘What is unique about this player is his vision on the ice as stated by a Leaf scout. He seems to be able to do things that other players aren’t able to do. His passes are crisp and accurate and come to other players who are sometimes surprised that they received them. He can led the rush but also be back into the d-zone to help defend the play. One last point the scout said is, he is one to two steps ahead of others in his thinking of the game, this can’t be taught, it’s a gift.’
Pretty heavy statement for such a young prospect and that my Leaf Nation Fans is exactly what Morgan Rielly is a ‘Future Prospect’. Don’t expect to see him with the big clubs line up next season (funnier things have happened haven’t they with the TML) he might need another year of junior and then a year of the minors but in 2-3 years expect this young gun to be on that blue line with other notable future stars such as Jake Gardiner, Korbinian Holzer and Juraj Mikus. This is exciting for the future of the Leafs but what about now? That’s a question for later maybe after the draft and in 8 days or so when the free agents are declared that we can ask Brian Burke and his ‘mis-fits’ of management, because if they don’t have an answer now I’m afraid Leaf Fans it will another long season where we are looking from the outside come April while everyone else will be playing in the inside!
By Warren Nye, UltimateHockeySource.com
June 23rd, 2012