Seider Says He Intends To Play In North America This Season
The fall is a time of year when a lot of teenagers are saying goodbye to home.
Moritz Seider has determined that he will be one of them.
The 18-year-old defenseman, selected ninth overall by the Detroit Red Wings in the 2019 NHL entry draft, is turning his back on Germany and setting a course for an immediate hockey future in North America.
Asked about his plans for the 2018-19 hockey season Monday while playing with Detroit’s team during the NHL Prospect Tournament in Traverse City, Mich, Seider dropped a bit of a bombshell.
“It’s probably not Germany anymore,” Seider told Detroitredwings.com. “I decided for myself probably staying in the States for a couple years now.”
His objective is to carve out a place for himself on the Red Wings blueline. Should that not come to fruition, Seider is of the opinion that the best landing spot for him in terms of future development is with Detroit’s top farm club, the AHL Grand Rapids Griffins.
“First of all, it should be about making the team 100 percent,” Seider said. “That’s why I’m here. If that’s not possible, I think Detroit has a great AHL team. Grand Rapids is just two hours away. Maybe that’s the best way, stepping on the small ice.”
The assumption immediately after the draft was that if Seider didn’t make the Wings, he’d likely return to play again with Adler Mannheim in Germany’s top pro league. That’s where he spent the 2018-19 season. But he doesn’t view that as a very likely outcome.
“It’s probably the third possibility,” Seider said. “Just a low percentage. There’s always an outlet in Germany, that’s for sure. But first of all, it should be Grand Rapids or Detroit.”
While he wasn’t ready to get on board 100 percent with Seider’s plan for this season, Grand Rapids coach Ben Simon believes that the young German rearguard could make the transition to North American hockey and lifestyle quicker than most Europeans.
“There’s always an acclimation period,” Simon said. “But for Mo, talking to him and being around him for a week here, you can tell that he’s a pretty mature kid. Whether he ends up — wherever he ends up — I think that he’s going to have a little bit of an adjustment because it’s just the reality.
“It’s a different country, it’s a different language, it’s a different culture. There’s a lot of differences. There’s a lot of firsts. But for him being as mature as he is as a player and as a person, you’re still going to see an adjustment period. but I don’t see it being a ton.
“He’s got potential. Young kids take a lot of time to develop, but he works hard, he competes hard, he takes care of himself and I think that based on what I’ve seen, I think that acclimation period might be a little bit smaller, hopefully because of those contributing factors.”
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