Griffin Luce

Aaron Vickers

Luce, the son of Scott Luce, Florida Panthers Director of Amateur Scouting, and grandson of former NHLer Don Luce, is a big defensive defenseman. His skating is a detriment as he has heavy feet and finds it difficult to keep up with speedy forwards, especially when he needs to transition or turn. His size, reach and instincts help compensate for this weakness, but are not enough on their own. He makes a strong first pass and is a heads-up skater able to keep tabs on his option as he eats up open ice in front of him. Defensive coverage is where he will make his living as he does not have much in the way of offensive upside at the pro level. Luce can be hard to beat in physical board battles or when battling for position in front of his crease. He has an active stick and maintains decent gaps, keeping his check to the outside as best as his mobility will allow. He can manhandle smaller opponents and just shove them off the puck. Luce will play the body and can deliver some solid checks both along the wall and in open ice. He’s not one to back down from skirmishes after the whistle, and he will drop the gloves to send a message or protect a teammate. He displays exceptional defensive position awareness. If he is to have an impact at the next level, he needs to work on his skating during his time at the University of Michigan and pick up a step or two.  (May 2016)