Draft Profile: Who is Oliver Moore and why is he a real possibility at 7th overall for PHI?
Who is Oliver Moore? To answer it simply: he’s that guy. That guy you throw over the boards because the game has started to slip away, and you need someone to do something spectacular to seize momentum.
He isn’t necessarily the team’s leader in points. He’s not your primary goal scorer. He’s probably not your leading assist accumulator.
No, he’s the guy who singlehandedly ensures that those guys are playing where they’re most useful: in the offensive zone. Because that’s what Moore does as a player. He controls terrain.
What is a 200-foot player? It’s a common refrain in hockey circles, and it’s meant to describe someone who makes an impact on the entire sheet of ice. In practice? It’s an almost derogatory term that describes plodding marauders who do a bit but not much on either end of the rink.
Oliver Moore is a 200-foot player. But not in the sense that you’re used to hearing about. He isn’t just “doing a little” offensively and “doing a little’ defensively.
He’s controlling all 200 feet of space on the rink. It isn’t just offense and defense to Moore. It’s everything. In fact, his greatest asset is his transition play.
Nathan MacKinnon. Dylan Larkin. Those are the names Moore provides when he’s asked who inspires his style of play the most.
But it’s more than just them who provide proof of the impact someone like Moore can bring.
Brayden Point. Roope Hintz. Mika Zibanijad. Connor McDavid is even more, but he’s also a true 200-foot player.
Moore’s sphere of influence is the entire rink. He has the ability to be anywhere. That’s primarily because of his skating. He’s fast.
And he isn’t just fast… he’s inhumanly fast.
People who train him are hard-pressed to find anybody who was faster at his age, including Connor McDavid.
As part of a profile diving into Moore as a person, Scott Wheeler of the Athletic spoke to Brian Gallivan. The NTDP’s strength and conditioning trainer.
The longtime strength and conditioning coach of the NTDP had this to say: “I would put him in the same speed category as Connor McDavid and I would think he’s probably faster than McDavid was at the same age. I’m not comparing him as a player, but from an athleticism and speed standpoint, I’ve never trained (McDavid), but there’s no way he was as fast as Oliver is.”
A biased source? Perhaps. But watching Moore for more than five minutes would have you hard-pressed to disagree.
As we all know, it isn’t just speed that makes McDavid what he is. And Moore isn’t McDavid.
But it isn’t just speed that makes Moore what he is.
As a skater, he’s the full package. His edge work is dynamic, and his turn radius is microscopic. He’s a burner at his top speed. And he can reach that top speed in shockingly few strides.
His hands and his brain lag a bit behind his legs at the moment. But that isn’t because he’s clumsy with the puck or because he thinks slowly. It’s because if Moore’s hands and mind ever did catch up with his feet, he’d be a generational talent.
And that’s the exciting part with him. This brings us to our key question.
Why Would the Flyers Want Him?
There are two paths to walk. Two entirely separate reasons to want him.
For one thing, what happens if he really explodes?
Moore has shown a base of strong puck-handling abilities, and he’s already manipulating the pace of his attacks by reading the gaps of his defenders.
You can refine your skills and IQ. Moore is already doing that on his own. And if he continues down that path? He’ll be a player that’s impossible to contain at the NHL level.
Screw the Flyers for just a moment. Anyone would want Moore if he exceeds his projected rate of development. His athletic ceiling is just so high.
But what if he only meets his expectations?
Well, he’s still a centerman who can play in your top-6 and play in all situations. He’s still chipping in offensively, probably at a 70-point clip. And he’s controlling the run of play with his legs.
He’s the kind of guy that plays a Colorado Avalanche style of game. He defends hard so he doesn’t have to defend often, and then he transports the puck like very few can.
Outside of winning the lottery… what more could the Flyers ask for than Oliver Moore?
Mandatory credit: Rena Laverty / USA Hockey