2016-17 Team: Tri-City Americans (#28)
Date of Birth: July 20, 1998
Place of Birth: Strathclair, Manitoba
Ht: 6’2″ Wt: 168 lbs
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2017 second-year eligible
- THW (Pike’s Picks): not ranked (final)
- Future Considerations: 95th (final)
- ISS: not ranked (May)
- Bob McKenzie: not ranked (Mid-season)
- Craig Button: 32nd (final)
- The Hockey News: 96th (final)
Tri-City center Morgan Geekie is one of a handful of second-year draft eligible players that should go somewhere in the middle rounds of the 2017 NHL Draft. The Manitoba product enjoyed a great leap forward in 2016-17, arguably more so than any other Western Hockey League player. In his first full WHL season, Geekie put up 25 points in 66 games. His second WHL season saw him more than triple his rookie production; he amassed 90 points in 72 games and finished 11th in the league in scoring.
The secret to Geekie’s improvements may be the work he put in during his 2015-16 rookie season. Geekie was used here and there in most game situations and while he wasn’t incredibly successful all of the time, he seemed to accumulate knowledge on what he needed to improve on during the season. In 2016-17, he seemed to apply his lessons from his rookie season and things just clicked for him. The encouraging thing about Geekie is how his success came to be; he and teammates Michael Rasmussen and Tyler Sandhu were the team’s offense generators and the team had to operate on a “by-committee” approach to scoring, so it’s not likely Geekie was able to ride anybody’s coattails. A lot of his production came during power play situations, though, so he could improve a bit in even strength situations.
Geekie’s not an elite prospect by any stretch, but his improvement over the past year is a very encouraging sign – especially given his relative inexperience in major junior hockey compared to a lot of players of similar offensive production levels. While any team taking him has to take the gamble that he won’t regress closer to his rookie levels of performance and production, they also are banking on Geekie potentially continuing his year-to-year progression. He’s already a very useful junior player, but he could become a very useful pro if his game keeps rounding out.
NHL Draft Projection
Morgan Geekie projects to go in the third or fourth round based on most draft rankings.
“Morgan Geekie shows tremendous strength in the face off circle using his lanky 6’2 frame to his advantage. Works hard in the offensive zone and finds his home between the hash marks in front of opposing goalies. A smart defensive centre who has been racking up time on the penalty kill and is an effective two-way player. Sees time on the potent Tri-City power play and cashes in on a regular basis. Has shown tremendous growth in his defensive game from a year ago and has developed a wicked shot from the slot.” – Marshall Mackinder, Hockey Now.
- Willing to battle to get to the net-front areas
- Balanced attacker; effective at shooting or distributing the puck
- Plays a smart two-way game
Under Construction (Improvements to Make)
- Needs to use his size more consistently
- Needs to bulk up a bit to withstand the physicality of the pro game
- Creates most of his offense immediately in front of the net, needs to become more versatile
- A bit dependent on power play time for offensive production
Geekie projects as a third line center.
Risk – 1/5, Reward – 3.5/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential
Offense 7.5/10, Defense 7/10
Geekie was named a WHL Western Conference Second Team All-Star for this past season.
Ryan Pike has covered the Calgary Flames and the NHL Draft extensively since 2010 as a Senior Writer for The Hockey Writers and Senior Contributing Editor of FlamesNation.ca. A member of the Professional Hockey Writers Association, he lives in Calgary.