Game Report: November 17, 2019 – Brandon Wheat Kings vs. Edmonton Oil Kings
Team: Brandon Wheat Kings
Height/Weight: 5’11 – 159lbs
Hometown: Lethbridge, Alberta
Ridly Greig is currently ranked as the 58th overall prospect in Future Considerations 2020 NHL Draft rankings and was given a “B” rating by NHL Central scouting, which projects a player to be a 2nd/3rd round candidate. Greig is also a former first-round (8th overall) Bantam draft-choice by the Brandon Wheat Kings.
Greig recorded an assist in tonight’s game versus the Edmonton Oil Kings, along with four shots on net, a +1 rating, and a 74% success rate in the faceoff circle. He was also able to display his silky hands with a shootout goal that helped the Wheat Kings secure the win over Edmonton.
The first thing I noticed about Greig’s game is how calm and collected of a player he is. He’s not going to blow you away with bolstering speed or a rifling shot, but he has a special ability to slow the game down to his own pace and analyze the ice around him to find teammates or skate into an open area of the ice.
His offensive instincts are second-to-none, and I was continually impressed with his ability to put himself in good positions on the ice where he can be a viable scoring threat.
As far as his skating goes, he did seem to display good edgework in tonight’s game, and in general, is a fairly smooth skater who is shifty enough to elude defenders while carrying the puck. He’s just missing that explosive stride and extra gear that you like to see out of top-rated prospects.
Initially I had noted that Greig didn’t use his body much in battles and didn’t appear to be a physical player, but was still able to win puck battles through effectively using his stick. However, as the game wore on Greig amped up his physical play and although he isn’t a very big player, he was using his body to pin opponents along the boards and deliver checks to Oil Kings defensemen on the forecheck.
As mentioned earlier, Greig put up four shots on goal, so we got to take a decent look at his release. From what I saw in this game, his shots were accurate and he’s able to get them off quickly, but were a bit soft. One of Greig’s biggest strengths in his game is finding open ice in the offensive zone, so he generally had ample enough space to get his shots off. To become a more dangerous player, Greig would benefit from adding more power behind his shot.
Greig displayed excellent puck skills, especially while controlling the play in the offensive zone and while protecting the puck on break-outs and zone entries, as well as showing his ability to mesmerize goaltenders with his hands during his shootout goal.
In summary, I was fairly impressed with Greig’s game versus the Oil Kings, and he’s a player I look forward to watching some more this season. As a 17-year-old, he proved to be an impact player for the Wheat Kings and plays a significant role in their lineup as the second-line center and is relied upon in special teams situations. He’s missing the raw skills of explosive acceleration and a rifling shot that is holding him out of conversations with 1st-round level prospects. With that said, those are both intangibles that can be improved with added strength, and it was encouraging to see his level of offensive instincts and hockey IQ, which were easily the most impressive parts of his game.