Defenseman: Moritz Seider
When Steve Yzerman and the Detroit Red Wings selected Moritz Seider with the sixth overall pick in the 2019 NHL Entry Level Draft, I wasn’t excited. Quite frankly, if I am completely candid, I had no idea who or anything about Seider.
This pick was Yzerman’s way of immediately causing havoc within the organization (in a good way). Yzerman selecting Seider was a way of telling Red Wings fans everywhere that he wouldn’t be afraid to go off of the board if he deems it necessary.
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The defense-stricken roster former general manager Ken Holland left behind left Yzerman no other choice but to select a defender. In the 2019 Draft, the top-ranked defender had been Bowen Byram, but he’d be selected fourth overall by the Colorado Avalanche.
I assume Yzerman had his sights set on forwards Kirby Dach and Alex Turcotte, but after both had been selected before Detroit had a chance to pick at six, Yzerman went after who he had as the second-best defender on his board, Seider.
The big German defender loves to throw his body around as if it’s a deadly weapon. If you are a fan of the Detroit Red Wings but find yourself mostly following the ‘big’ club, let me tell you, you’re going to love this kid.
Seider has a lot of growing left to do, but he stands 6-foot-4 and plays around 210-pounds. Once he fills out and comes in around 225-pounds, he won’t just be landing thunderous hits. He will be hammering forwards with punishing hits.
Last season Seider played 49 games with the Grand Rapids Griffins, recording two goals and 22 points while spending 28 minutes in the penalty box. Seider skated as a minus -5 during his first year in Detroit’s system.
The Detroit Red Wings decided to loan Seider to Adler Mannheim of DEL due to the coronavirus pandemic. Seider got off to a scorching start recording 12 points in 17 games forcing Yzerman to deny Seider an opportunity to complete in the 2021 World Juniors Tournament. That decision only strengthens Seider’s chances of making Detroit’s opening night lineup, especially if he continues his strong play in Red Wings camp, leading into Detroit’s mid-January regular-season start.
The 2019 sixth overall pick will have an opportunity to become a top-pairing defender in Detroit. I expect Detroit will start the 2021 season with Filip Hronek paired with Patrik Nemeth. That leaves an opportunity to pair the rookie Seider with veteran Marc Staal. Staal is not what he once was, but this is a perfect way to introduce Seider to the NHL.
NHL ETA: 2021