Posted 13 November 2014 - 11:12 AM
Yeah, I was always hoping McKee would be able to put it all together and become a half decent hockey player. No one is expecting him to put up huge points, but he needs to show some promise playing university hockey. Just one point (goal) in 30 games at WMU isn't enough, even for a goon like McKee. If he could round out to be a solid shut down guy that can skate, hold on to the puck, kill penalties and eat up a few minutes at the NHL level, he would be a great guy to have on our forth line. Sadly, I don't see it happening...
Posted 10 December 2014 - 01:26 PM
I think his struggles at the college level should be expected. He's going from being a goon dman in USHL to being a forward in college where you can't be a goon.
I would say he's still a "raw project", but he has useful tools that you can't exactly teach a player to have. With size, skating and the ability to engage physically, he doesn't need to add much to become a useful role player at the NHL level. Some responsibility with the puck and some awareness with out it is about it. Will he ever be a key player in NHL? Probably not, but I think his size pretty much guarantees that he'll get an entry level contract regardless of how he produces at the college level.
Unless he somehow starts lighting up the college ranks, his ceiling is probably a physical 4th line forward who can throw his body around and chip in on the forecheck while also acting as an enforcer when needed, AND/or a physical stay at home third pairing Dman who can also act as an enforcer. He could also end up being a John Scott type for a team that might still want a player like that down the road.
Might be off base, but his development will probably be similar to Ericssons. Ericsson was taken with the last pick in the draft as a "raw project" who had been going through a transition from Forward to Defense. However, the main reason he was taken was because he had NHL size. In the four years before he was signed, Ericsson was never able to stick at Swedens highest level, and had managed only a single goal and assist in 88 games when he did get called to the highest level. However, the Red Wings signed him to an entry level deal, where he quickly progressed in GR and became a regular in the playoffs for the Red Wings before his waiver exemption wore off.
One of the biggest assets the Red Wings have with McKee is time. The deadline to sign him is June 2016, and he'll still get 3 years of waiver exemption at the pro level. Basically the Red Wings have till the end of 2018 on 2019 to try to hone him into an NHL player.
That all being said, I still wouldn't mind if he became a serviceable Derek Boogaard type for the Wings...
Take the sites credibility for what it is, but this "writer" thought he was one of the Wings better dmen at their prospect camp this past summer: http://octopusthrowe...ing-mike-mckee/
Edited by DSM, 10 December 2014 - 01:27 PM.
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