Michael McLeod

Darren Walker

McLeod is a high-pace, fleet-footed, two-way center who does an exceptional job of moving the puck around, creating time and space, and opening shooting lanes. He displays his quick thinking to adjust his position by even a few inches to be in a better position for a pass or one-time opportunity. He possesses a quick first step and generates all kinds of speed as he weaves his way up ice with the puck. McLeod picks up speed with every step, has big-time acceleration and makes good use of his edges to cut and twist gracefully. His speed with the puck doesn’t fade, but actually increases in some instances, and he displays excellent separation speed on the rush. He is strong on the puck and will hold onto it for as long as needed. McLeod shows some strength as he uses his back to fend off the check and gain ground to get to an area that he deems as his best opportunity to distribute the puck for a quality scoring chance. He possesses a set of quick hands that allows him to dangle defenders inside and out if he so chooses. McLeod sees lanes develop and is patient to hit his man at the right time. This competitive center shows his strength in the faceoff circle, winning key draws time and time again. His defensive game really stands out as he is excellent in his positioning, helping low and playing well positionally. He is also quick to cover for missed checks. He impresses with his commitment on the backcheck, making it a priority to get on the right side of the puck to knock the man off of it. McLeod is quick to offer support down low on the wall, immediately getting on the defensive side of the puck and being there when the puck pops free. On the penalty kill, McLeod is sent over the boards to take key faceoffs. He anticipates the play exceptionally well and makes great use of his stick, quickly lunging and using his stick to intercept the pass and send it the length of the ice. He will sacrifice his body and dive into the lane to block shots and prevent an opportunity at the net. His competitive nature is on display each shift and there is no quit in his game until the final buzzer sounds.  (May 2016)