Ridly Greig, owner of a fantastic hockey name, seems like the Flyers’ type of player.
Though he is isn’t the biggest guy in the world (5’11”, 160 lbs), he possesses a skilled game with a lot of creativity, yet is also very scrappy and loves to fight for pucks and can irk opponents. This is why I compared him to Travis Konecny in the opening (the second TK-type player in a row!). He has a rare combination of hands, with the confidence to make plays, and a mean streak which can lead to him getting under the skin of opponents.
Additionally, Greig’s father Mark currently works as an amateur scout for the Flyers, so I’m sure that the team will have their full attention on Ridly.
Let’s dive in:
What do the stats say?
Greig plays for the Brandon Wheat Kings of the WHL, and had a breakout season in 2019-20. Previously, in his first WHL season in 2018-19, Greig scored 35 points in 63 games in his age 16 season, which is more impressive given his August 2002 birthdate. He is one of the younger members of this year’s draft class.
In 2019-20, Greig elevated his game and became an all-purpose use player, getting both power play and penalty kill time, succeeding at both. Overall, Greig scored 60 points in 56 WHL games (26 of which were goals). He was also picked by team Canada and played five games in the Hlinka-Gretzky cup, scoring three points.
It is evidently clear that Greig’s elevation in prospect status has come from his stellar breakout this past season, and he has both first and second round projections depending on where you look. You’re picking Greig hoping that he really breaks lose in his draft+1 season (much like Konecny did), and I think it could certainly be in the cards for Greig. He plays a style of hockey that coaches adore and he’ll only be relied upon more by his junior team.
The Eye Test
Greig is neither a pure sniper nor pure playmaker, but is an overall talented offensive forward. He can make plays happen with his passing ability, and isn’t a bad shooter of the puck, but where his game shines in the offensive zone is in his creativity and stickhandling. Greig plays a fast brand of hockey and has the necessary hands and deception to beat defenders with said speed, and attempts plays you don’t see very often.
Ridly Greig is a prospect that grows on you. He is a feisty kid with a good set of hands to go with his wheels.— Tony Ferrari (@theTonyFerrari) March 28, 2020
To start the clip we see Greig getting leveled at the bottom of the screen, next thing you know he's flying by everyone for a highlight-reel goal! #WHL #2020NHLDraft pic.twitter.com/Xbhfv5Vs0N
On top of that, Greig is a very scrappy, feisty spark-plug in the lineup. As you can see from the above clip, he isn’t afraid of putting his body on the line and often does get hit (and become the hitter himself) due to that. He’s tough in puck battles and his chippy nature, combined with his skill, makes him a joy to watch. He’s a guy you’d hate to play against.
His skill flashes the most when he is forced into difficult areas on the ice. As I said before, Greig tries some very interesting moves on the ice and they often work. This speaks to his hockey IQ and shows just how confident he is when he gets going. It looks like he truly believes he has the world as his feet.
Love this zone entry by Ridly Greig. Manages to outskate two players on Winnipeg and delivers a light tap pass along the boards. This allows Greig to skate up the boards and then transition to a spot in the slot. #2020NHLDraft | @FCHockey | @DobberProspects pic.twitter.com/7XrACYHHNv— Josh Tessler (@JoshTessler_) November 30, 2019
I have seen some complaints, however, about Greig’s skating. He isn’t a bad skater but it isn’t very good either. His stride when he moves forward just looks a bit weird (though not Matthew Strome levels). In his write up, Corey Pronman had this to say:
I think he has a powerful lower body so he has quickness, but the stride in itself is not technically smooth.
I would have to agree, and while this isn’t a problem that can’t be fixed, it certainly contributes to his relatively low grading by some on draft boards.
If you’re looking for another player like Travis Konecny, you can have your pick of either Greig or Wiesblatt. I can’t say I have a preference, and in honesty, I wouldn’t want the Flyers to pick either in their position in the first round. There are better players available. However, if they trade down or acquire a high second round pick, Greig would be a fantastic addition for the prospect pool.