SEEN Magazine’s Eric Adelson penned a superb article about Red Wings prospect Moritz Seider, profiling Seider from afar as the young defenseman prepares for a mid-November season start with the DEL’s Adler Mannheim:
“It’s very hard to find a defenseman with that size and skating ability who can play big minutes,” says [Red Wings director of player development Shawn] Horcoff. “I don’t know where you get those players if you don’t draft them.”
No, his stats weren’t eye-popping, but his vision was. Again — the Seider gift is seeing a little bit into the future.
“It’s all about reading the game and trying to be ahead of your opponents by two to five steps,” he says. “Maybe it will give you a little more time. That’s what I try to do. And I never had trouble with that at all. How quick can you turn your head to look up the ice — not to see your opponents but seeing my guys? I always see where my guys are and not so much where the pressure is coming.”
This sort of intangible has been part of his hockey life from the beginning, when he was a kindergartner skating laps with his classmates and a local coach noticed his raw talent.
His parents, who ran a home for the elderly, were wary but they eventually gave in. Seider — who eventually became the rookie of the year in Germany’s top league — grew up watching Red Wings nemesis Scott Niedermayer as well as Lidstrom, and he studied the way they chose when to join the offensive rush without losing any defensive leverage.
He picked more traditional jersey numbers as a youth — 21, 18 — but eventually settled on No. 53 because it was the year of his grandfather’s birth, and also because he liked the Volkswagen Beetle from Disney’s “Herbie” movies (which was emblazoned with 53 on the side). He is prepared to be called “Herbie” because of this choice. “It would be funny,” he says.