– Isaiah George –
Toronto Marlboros (GTHL) | Left Defence | 2020 OHL Draft Eligible
Oakville, Ontario | 6-foot-1, 170lbs | Feb. 15th, 2004
Isiah George, a leader for the perennial powerhouse Toronto Marlboros, is an elite two-way defenceman who can overwhelm opponents at either end of the ice with his combination of strength and skill. The reigning GTHL Bantam Champions are a much more defensive-minded group than in years’ past, led heavily by George, who not only installs an intimidating presence on the back-end, but also some offensive upside from the blueline.
Related: Don’t miss any of our 2020 OHL Draft Prospect Profiles.
Standing at 6’1” and 170 pounds, George will never back down from engaging in the physical game. He effectively eliminates space for opposing forwards on the rush and can easily drive them to the outside before taking them out along the wall. Up front, George has a great shot from the point with which he can cleverly get through traffic to create scoring chances.
- Poise and Decision Making
- Lower-Body Strength
- Two-Way Upside
George is the jack-of-all-trades type of defenceman. He’s as solid as they come at both ends of the ice and can be a difference maker at even strength, on the penalty kill, and on the power play. Perhaps his greatest strength is his ability to think the game at a high pace. George is a tremendous decision maker with the puck, demonstrating the poise necessary to escape pressure and make smart, calculated breakout passes. Without the puck, he’s just as wise. George’s positional play is impressive, combining the use of his body and his stick to efficiently eliminate time and space of his opponents while directing them into the corners.
George also makes smart decisions when it comes to playing the body, determining when it’s safe to take his opponent out of the play while not taking himself out of position. On the transition, George displays multiple routes to moving the puck up ice, whether that be with a slick two-line pass, or by skating the puck through the neutral zone himself to gain entry of the offensive zone. Once on the blueline, George can effectively walk the line and move the puck east-west, or make an analyzed decision to get the puck on net through traffic. His ability to get pucks on net is premier, making him a real threat on the man advantage.
Area of Improvements:
- Offensive Mindset
- Top End Speed
The new era of defencemen has arrived, and they’re not afraid to use their skill-set to create offence. George clearly possesses the potential to be an electric two-way defenceman who consistently chips in on offence each night, and he could benefit from making a few more risk-calculated pinches.
Although already considered as one of the top defenders in his class, George could put his name at the top of the list with a higher offensive ceiling, which he appears to have all the talent to achieve. One aspect that could help him get there would be greater top-end speed, which would make George much more dangerous on the rush and would allow him to drive the net with the puck himself.
All in all, Isiah George should be considered amongst the top defending prospects for the 2020 OHL Draft. He’s the type of player who can get the job done in any situation, and with remarkable strength and skating abilities, he should have no problems adjusting to the OHL game.
Fans will love his offensive upside, and coaches will love his defensive prowess. Keep your eye on Isiah George, who appears to be a lock for the first-round of the 2020 OHL Draft.