Photo By: Peter Lee, Record staff
2015 OHL Draft 12th overall pick Greg Meireles announced his commitment to Kitchener Rangers, Thursday. Meireles is one of the final 1st rounders in the OHL Draft to commit to their team.
Meireles was highly touted going into the draft in April 2015. His effort and powerful play set him up to be a fan favorite for any team that took a chance on him in the draft.
His effort allows him to work and tinker with his offensive and defensive game. Meireles has plenty of upside on offense and will need to keep up on defense in his final year with the Ottawa Jr. 67’s. His shot is fully developed, and possibly ready for the NHL, and he plays the back-check game fairly well with room for improvement.
Meireles also knows how to produce. In his 27 games with Ottawa’s bantam team, he scored 51 points. Then, leading his midget team as their captain, he scored 41 in 24 games, including 18 goals.
Meireles was a big factor in the OHL Gold Cup as well. 3 goals and 6 assists in 5 games showcased his poise and maturity in the big games like playoffs.
Steven Ellis at Penalty Box Radio offered these words about Greg Meireles going into the OHL Draft.
“Meireles may not have the physical traits that some teams may be looking for, his small stature (5’9) has allowed him to show incredible quickness and the ability to maneuver through tight situations. An elite skater that can set the pace with just one stride, Meireles has fantastic vision that allows him to make a play way before any opposing defensemen have a chance to counteract his actions. His release from his wrist shot is absolutely mesmerizing, and in no matter what capacity he attempts, he always seems to find a way to get the puck into the back of the net. He’s almost like a smaller Jamie Benn, and if you’re anything like the Dallas Stars star, you’ll be good at the next step.” – Steven Ellis, Penalty Box Radio
Where Meireles is strong, he is not just strong. He is at the level of some professionals and there is still room for improvement. The areas of his game where there is a need for more improvement, Meireles still has a tight grasp of the task at hand and shows promise that he can easily adapt.
His shot and skating exemplify his strong suits and his physical game and defensive IQ fit the latter. Meireles exhibits a fast and hard shot, which work well with his agility and ability to easily cut to the outside, or inside, and get a quick, hard shot on the goaltender.
Meireles has the capability of getting back to help out his team, but his size and stature works against him to get his body on opposing players. He is 5’9″ which is small for a center, but the trend of smaller forwards has gone up in the past few years with players like Tyler Ennis, Tyler Johnson and of course Martin St. Louis finding successful careers with their respective teams.
Greg Meireles is eligible for the 2017 NHL Draft. He is playing in the CCHL and is under contract, meaning he is playing for the Ottawa Jr. 67’s no matter what. Even if he committed to the Rangers, which he has done. So he will not be making his full OHL season debut until next season and will most likely be playing in junior the year after he is drafted.