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Sharks 2018 first-rounder rumoured to be on the move again

august 18, 2019
At least two accounts on Twitter are saying that the San Jose Sharks first-round pick in 2018 is likely to change OHL teams once again, adding the Peterborough Petes aren't interested in starting the new season with Ryan Merkley in the line-up.



While the 19-year-old defenseman appears to have amazing talent (he was once ranked right behind Rasmus Dahlin as the 2nd best blueliner in the 2018 draft), the major issue with Merkley seems to be attitude and maturity; or a lack of it. In this article, written in 2018 by Iain MacIntyre of Sportsnet, he states:

Honestly, viewed from afar, his greatest fault seems to be immaturity. And not immaturity by average teenager standards – but immaturity in the context of the alternate-universe world of elite sports, in which NHL prospects who are just finishing high school are as prepared for draft interviews as courtroom lawyers and are sometimes better dressed.


Merkley had publicly argued with his coach during the previous season while playing with the Guelph Storm, something he was sent back to the dressing room for, and was suspended three games for a dangerous and undisciplined, two-handed slash at an opponent who had whacked him on the hand. Merkley recorded 5 goals and 39 points in just 28 games to start the 2018–19 season before getting traded to the Peterborough Petes in exchange for Pavel Gogolev and five draft picks on December 14, 2018. The haul accumulated by the Storm for Merkley's services is a good indication of just how talented he is. Yet, it appears the Petes are also looking to break ties with him, leading one to wonder whether his maturity level is improving. It's also worth mentioning that even though the Storm were willing to part ways with Merkley despite his hot start to the season, Guelph went on to win the OHL championship that season.

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