With the 30th, and final, pick in the 2013 Fansided NHL Mock Draft, the Chicago Blackhawks select D Josh Morrissey of the WHL’s Prince Albert Raiders.
Morrissey is an excellent puck-moving defenseman. He would be an excellent fit on the Blackhawks in the future, filling in a role much the same as current defenseman Duncan Keith. While Morrissey is smaller than most high-rated defensemen, (6’0″) size is not an issue for the prospect because he does not lack any physicality or grit. He is able to deliver key hits and not leave himself out of the play. He is credited for jump-starting his teams’ offense with strong skating out of the defensive end, followed by a good breakout pass. He can lead the rush, just as Keith and fellow ‘Hawk Nick Leddy have demonstrated, and a prospect like Morrissey will be key on future power-play units.
Morrissey can also use his good stride defensively, and he can back-check extremely well, allowing himself to get back into the play if there happens to be an odd-man rush or turnover. He has played a lot of heavy minutes for the Raiders in the WHL, and this will be key when looking at his potential in the top two defensive pairings on the Hawks.
TSN scout Craig Button had this to say about Morrissey:
Josh is a very good skater with excellent agility and quickness and he uses this very well to jump into the attack offensively or to close on the play defensively. He will hit and looks to deliver open ice hits. He has learned to ‘manage’ all of the aspects of defence and is more capable of playing the demanding minutes. Very good puck skills with a good shot and has very good vision and contributes offensively. He competes and wants to make a difference in the game and has the means to do it, whether it be defensively, offensively or physically.
Morrissey would not be able to make the jump this early in his career, and would spend at least one more year with the Raiders before playing with the Blackhawks’ AHL affiliate, the Rockford IceHogs, where he would play along other ‘Hawks prospects such as Ryan Stanton and Carter Hutton.
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