The Journey: Memorial Cup-date (Morrison, McTavish, Poirier, Sourdif)

Benjamin Gehrels

2022-07-02

Welcome back to The Journey, where we follow hockey prospects and their paths to the NHL, providing fantasy predictions and analysis along the way.

The Memorial Cup, a Champion's League for Canadian junior hockey (WHL, OHL, QMJHL), concluded on Wednesday this week with the Saint John Sea Dogs overcoming the Hamilton Bulldogs by a score of 6-3. William Dufour, highlighted here last week, first propelled the Saint John Sea Dogs into the finals with a huge four-goal game, then cemented the championship with another goal and an assist. He finished with seven goals and eight points in only four games and was named tournament MVP. Now, of course, his fantasy stocks are trending straight up. This week, we'll take a look at some other players from the Memorial Cup who poolies should have on their radar.

Besides Dufour, the next player that bears mentioning is the Bulldogs' regular season scoring leader and OHL playoff MVP, Logan Morrison. Morrison's eight points in five games locked him into a three-way tie with Dufour and teammate Mason McTavish for the tournament scoring lead. Although Morrison was first eligible for the 2020 draft, his 45 points in 59 games that year weren't compelling enough to overcome his shortcomings—most notably his edgework, agility, and lack of physicality. The 19-year-old was then another casualty of the cancelled OHL season in 2020-21 and went undrafted again in 2021. The 2022 draft will be his last chance to hear his name called before moving into the free agent pool. His 100 points in only 60 games (1.67 points per game), which was sixth in the OHL, should give teams enough incentive to take a swing on him this time—even if it's in the later rounds.

To put Morrison's season into perspective, Dufour is the same age and scored 116 points in 66 games (1.76 ppg) this year—and that was in the QMJHL, known to be higher scoring than the OHL. Applying Mason Black's PNHLe model to account for league differences, it turns out that Morrison actually had a higher PNHLe (67) this season than Dufour (62). So where's the hype?

Put on your GM hat for a moment. In which round would you aim to take a player like Logan Morrison in this year's draft? Third? Fourth? Earlier? His PNHLe in 2021-22 was good for 21st among all prospects in Black's Rank King app who haven't played more than a few NHL games. He clearly has upside but feels comparable to 2022-eligible Jordan Dumais in that his production is enormous but scouts have substantial enough concerns about his game to k