Scouting Report: Scott Morrow

Photo Credit – Shattuck-St. Mary’s School

Scott Morrow is a 2021 NHL Draft eligible prospect, who hails from Darien, Connecticut. While Connecticut doesn’t produce nearly the amount of players that Massachusetts, Minnesota, Michigan and Wisconsin does, we have seen a lot of talent come out of the State of Connecticut over the years including Spencer Knight (same hometown as Morrow), Cam Atkinson, Ron Hainsey, Chris Drury, Jonathan Quick, Craig Janney, Max Pacioretty, Nick Bonino and Kevin Shattenkirk.

Morrow and his sister, Sydney Morrow both play hockey for Shattuck-St. Mary’s in Faribault, Minnesota. He has spent the last four years or so developing his game with Shattuck and has turned into a well-rounded right handed defenseman.

Aside from playing for Shattuck, he played in two USHL games last season with the Youngstown Phantoms. Since last season, his USHL rights have transferred a few times. He was dealt to the Sioux City Musketeers initially and then the Musketeers flipped his right to the Fargo Force. But, with that being said, there is no indication that Morrow will move to the USHL full-time. In May, Morrow sat down with Brian Elliott Schlossman of the Grand Forks Herald and the 2021 NHL Draft eligible prospect indicated that “if the season starts on time, he’ll be in Fargo”. Unfortunately, the USHL season was delayed and thus Morrow opted to start the season in Minnesota.

So far this season, in nine games played for Shattuck St. Mary’s 18U Prep, Morrow has recorded 13 points (three goals and ten assists). Per EliteProspects, he is averaging 1.44 points per game, which is almost on par with his performance last season. If Morrow plays a full season (which is roughly 55/56 games), at that rate, he would put up around 79 points.

Next season, he will be joining the University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks. The University of North Dakota has a lot of talent on their blue-line with Jake Sanderson, Jacob Bernard-Docker and Tyler Kleven. Since he is headed to North Dakota, there will more than likely be plenty of rumors tying Morrow to the Ottawa Senators as Pierre Dorion and company has established a connection with the university and quite a few Senators prospects have spent time in Grand Forks over the last few years.

Player Profile

D.O.B – November 1, 2002
Nationality – United States of America
Draft Eligibility – 2021
Height –6’2
Weight –192 lbs
Position – Defense
Handedness – Right

Morrow’s Style Of Play

When it comes to his playing style, he can be handful to skate around. When Morrow moves from the offensive zone to the neutral zone, he tends to play close to the vest and will opt to utilize his stick to push attackers away from his blue-line. Once he gets across his blue-line, he lowers his body and widens his stance. By doing so, he eliminates lanes for attackers. The attackers end up along the half-wall. With that being said, the goal to prevent high danger scoring chances and Morrow does that with his preventive defense specialties. When Morrow is patrolling the boards in his zone, he alters his gap control. Sometimes, Morrow will be right in your face and apply a quality backcheck. He tends to tighten up more so around the red line. Morrow doesn’t just stick to his own side. He owns the ice. At a moments notice, he will deviate and switch to the left side if he feels that his defensive partner is struggling at neutralizing the attack.

With his defensive style, you can expect Morrow to be the last defenseman to re-enter the defensive zone and that is due to his aggressive defensive measures in the neutral zone. Morrow thrives in the neutral zone and it would be a mistake to force him to adjust his style. Instead, coaches should expect to pair him with a defenseman who drops back to the net consistently.

From a puck movement perspective, there is a lot to cover with Morrow. His puck movement is quite similar to Barrie Colts defenseman Brandt Clarke. Morrow uses well-timed crossovers in the defensive zone to help drive his acceleration. He will not drive the play through dangerous situations. If there is an attacker bearing down on him, he adjusts on the fly, drops back and tries a different lane. But, he doesn’t just drop back in the neutral and defensive zones, he also plays it safe in the offensive zone when traffic is in front of him. When controlling the puck in the neutral zone, like Clarke, he will zig-zag around to avoid confrontations with his opponents.

While he is effective at controlled transitions, there are instances in uncontrolled transitions where Morrow runs into some problems. Sometimes Morrow’s decision-making on his first pass is off the mark and his passes lead to turnovers in front of his net. In addition, when he is finding the right teammate to pass the puck to and shifting around traffic in his own zone, there are instances where Morrow struggles to keep the puck on his stick and that leads to cough ups without much contact from opponents.

Morrow’s skating is quite strong. His foot extension is long, which allows him to take fewer strides when in transition. The recovery is not too wide, which is critical for strong mobility. His edges and crossovers are the main drivers for his acceleration and come in handy when navigating/stick-handling in the offensive zone.

In the offensive zone, Morrow loves to pinch, skate up the boards and complete centered passes to the slot. While you would expect Morrow mostly to pinch and control the cycle on the right side of the ice, that is not always the case. As mentioned above, Morrow likes to command the game and will alternate between rushing up the left and right side. Additionally, you can expect Morrow to charge through the slot and will use his stick-handling skills to swerve around attackers. All-in-all, his offensive play is quite strong, but I would like to see some refinement on his shot. When Morrow is shooting from the blue-line, his shot goes wide quite a bit. But, any time that you are taking a long-range shot, you need to expect that the chances of the puck reaching the net and not bouncing off the boards are much lower than if you are shooting from the slot or right at doorstep.

Comparison

Tyson Barrie, Right Handed Defenseman, Edmonton Oilers

Like Tyson Barrie, both defensemen are quite strong in transition, love to pinch, work the cycle and complete centered passes to the slot. While Barrie’s shot is strong from the point, I’m confident that with refinement that Morrow can get there.


stats from InStat and EliteProspects

Prospect report written by Josh Tessler. If you would like to follow Josh on Twitter, his handle is @JoshTessler_.

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