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TYLER BERTUZZI
Tyler Bertuzzi
Position: Left Wing
Shoots: Left
Vitals: 6’1” / 178 lbs.
Birthdate: February 24, 1995
Hometown: Sudbury, Ontario
Acquired: Detroit’s third choice (58th overall) in the 2013 draft
CSS Ranking: 207th North American Skater (2013)
Contract: None (must sign by June 1, 2015)
RWC Says: Agitating Winger

STORIES

AWARDS
None Listed

HISTORY
2011-12
  • Entered OHL with Guelph as a fourth round (78th overall) pick.
  • Played regularly for Guelph (61-6-11-17, 117 PIMs, plus-2).
  • Dropped the gloves 15 times according to hockeyfights.com.
2012-13
  • Returned to Guelph for second OHL season.
  • Improved marginally offensively over his rookie year (43-13-9-22).
  • Missed significant time to head/neck/shoulder injuries.
  • Cut his fighting majors from 15 in 2011-12 to three, per hockeyfights.com.
  • Didn’t record a point in five playoff games despite seeing regular ice time.
  • Despite low Central Scouting ranking (207th), selected in second round, 58th overall, by Detroit.
2013-14
  • Battled Nick Jensen in controversial intra-squad fight at Red Wings’ July 2013 development camp.
  • Returned to OHL for his third season with powerhouse Guelph.
  • Was among first-place club’s top half-dozen scorers through December (29-9-25-34, plus-9).
  • Also had 49 PIMs and fought three times.
  • Suffered head/neck injury in Dec. 8 fight with Joshua Chapman and missed rest of regular season.
  • Head/neck injury was not a concussion, but was the same one that plagued him in 2012-13.
  • Red Wings flew him to Detroit to work with specialists at University of Michigan.
  • Missed 38 total games before returning for Game 3 of the OHL first round versus Plymouth.
  • After returning told Sudbury Star his fighting would be “limited” due to his injury.
  • Finished sixth in Guelph playoff scoring en route to OHL title (18-10-7-17).
  • Also had plus-14 rating and 24 PIMs and did not fight after his return from injury.
  • Led Memorial Cup in goal-scoring in runner-up finish (4-5-0-5, plus-3).

SCOUT COMMENTS
“He makes (Chicago Blackhawks winger) Andrew Shaw look like a Lady Byng winner. He’s a really aggravating guy to play against and has a really good feel for the game. He’s an agitating presence but also can make plays and is all over the place. He’s not the biggest guy in the world … but in terms of getting in people’s faces, being aggravating, making plays and being around the net, he’s an effective player.” — TSN analyst Bob McKenzie (June 2013) … “He’s got something you can’t teach in terms of his fearless approach to the game and he plays bigger than he is. He’s an energy guy who is willing to fight and plays that abrasive style.” — Red Wings assistant general manager of hockey administration Ryan Martin (June 2013) … “Bertuzzi is that type of player where he’s in your face and plays hard every shift. He’s an agitator but he’ll back it up. He handles himself very well but just brings it hard every time.” — Red Wings scout Jeff Finley (June 2013) … “He’s a high-energy guy. In the NHL, he’s one of those guys that you love to play with. He grinds it out, but he’s got more skill than guys give him credit for. He plays the game the right way and can do a lot of different things for us. He can penalty kill. He can go in front and handle the puck on the power play. But he also can play a hard, physical game against other players.” — Guelph Storm head coach Scott Walker (December 2013, Toronto Star) … “When I think of how close he was to calling it a season … he’s been a key to our success.” — Guelph Storm general manager Mike Kelly (April 2014, Rogers TV) … “Love his hands and hockey sense, his compete, he plays with an edge. He’s got to get stronger and work on a couple of things but certainly we’re happy where we got him in a draft.” — Red Wings general manager Ken Holland (Sportsnet, May 2014).

STRENGTHS
Described by the Red Wings as a “rat” and compared to Chicago Blackhawks forward Andrew Shaw by the Red Wings and others, although Brad Marchand and Sean Avery also come to mind … Energizes teams with his gritty, fearless style … Aggravates opponents by yapping and taunting, but also has historically been willing to fight, despite his smaller stature … Hated by opposing fans, often drawing boos when he’s on the road with his antics… A good skater who hustles around the ice … Beginning to show a surprising touch, with a hard, accurate shot and quick release, as well as good offensive sense … Drives to the net and scores greasy goals … Throws his body around and makes an impact with hits … Forechecks hard … Not easy to play against … Never quits … Good penalty killer … Blocks shots … Drives to the net … Good bloodlines as the nephew of Todd Bertuzzi.

WEAKNESSES
Needs to learn the fine line of agitating opponents while staying disciplined … Needs more weight on his frame to be more effective in his role as he moves up the ranks … Alarming head/neck injury has plagued him for two seasons and could soften his trademark hard-edged, irritating style … His aggravating style includes a reputation for embellishing to draw penalties … Although he has shown an emerging knack for offense, to say he’d reach Brad Marchand levels production-wise would be a stretch, meaning he will likely be limited to a depth role in the NHL.

PROJECTION
Although the Red Wings took Bertuzzi much earlier than he was ranked, they love how he fills his role as an aggravating, energizing winger. Plagued by an alarming head/neck injury for parts of the past two seasons, Bertuzzi needs to show he can put that behind him without sacrificing the hard physical style that makes him an NHL prospect. He did that with a breakthrough, eye-catching performance at the 2014 Memorial Cup, and needs to do more of the same when he returns to Guelph in 2014-15. He’s a lock to be signed to an entry-level contract and will turn pro the following season.

Player statistics powered by www.eliteprospects.com

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2009-2010 Sudbury Wolves Bantam AAA NOBHL 42 24 45 69 72 | Playoffs 6 3 10 13
 2010-2011 Sudbury Wolves Minor Midget AAA NDMHL 26 18 36 54 26 |          
  Sudbury Nickel Capital Wolves GNML 3 1 1 2 12 | Playoffs 2 0 0 0 12 
 2011-2012 Guelph Storm OHL 61 6 11 17 117 | Playoffs 6 0 2 2
 2012-2013 Guelph Storm OHL 43 13 9 22 68 | Playoffs 5 0 0 0 14 
 2013-2014 Guelph Storm OHL 29 10 25 35 49 | Playoffs 18 10 7 17 24 
  Guelph Storm M-Cup 4 5 0 5 10 |          
 2014-2015 Guelph Storm OHL - - - - - |          

Player statistics © www.eliteprospects.com



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