Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Chris Tierney

Chris Tierney - London Knights

6'0" - 181 LBS
D.O.B. July 1, 1994

Chris Tierney is in his second season with the OHL's London Knights. During the 2010-2011 campaign, Tierney played in 47 games scoring 3 times and adding 8 assists. In 39 games this season, he has already surpassed last seasons totals with 5 goals and 11 assists.

Tierney was selected in the first round (19th overall) by the Knights in the 2010 OHL Priority Draft after playing for the York Simcoe Express where he scored 35 goals and added 55 assists  for 90 points in just 57 games.

Tierney is another guy on what seems like an endless list of draft eligible players on the Knights. We all know about the depth on the Knights and it's difficult, even for second year players to get top minutes or quality minutes. And it will be even more difficult with trade deadline come and gone where the Knights have 8 natural centers on their roster.

Tierney was on the NHL Central Scouting B list of players to watch coming into the season. Central Scouting also ranked him 20th among forwards from the OHL in their preliminary list in November. He was also at the NHL Research and Development Camp in the summer.

Tierney has a high hockey IQ. That, with his great vision gives him the ability to find and set up teammates. He is an above average playmaker, a very good skater and has good speed, both first steps and overall. He has a good shot and an ability to score himself, but is more of a setup man then goal scorer.  With more experience and confidence, he will use all those assets he has.

Tierney trained with fitness guru, and former NHL'er Gary Roberts in the off season and came back to London having added some bulk and muscle to his frame. Standing 6' he's not small and could be more physical on the ice. Again, we believe that with more experience and confidence, that will come. And if you watch Tierney close enough, you'll see that he has some leadership qualities. And that's good to see on a team that boasts so many young players.

Once again, we spoke with John Matisz who covers the Knight for London Community News :

Q. Chris put up massive numbers with the York Simcoe Express prior to being drafted by the Knights. But the offense isn't coming quite as easily in London. Is that due more so because of the depth London has or is it trouble adjusting to the OHL game ?

JM. I think it may be a mix of both. At times I find Tierney is a perimeter player, a guy who lets the play come to him. I'm confident though that with more ice time he would become more comfortable with and without the puck. This would naturally bring him to a higher production rate. 

Q. Chris was invited to the NHL Research and Development camp and ranked 20th in the preliminary rankings from the OHL for the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. Has he put any added pressure on himself to justify it ?

JM. In the handful of times I've talked to Tierney, he appears to be a pretty level-headed kid. I doubt he, or the coaching staff/his teammates/his family for that matter, have put any more pressure on him. From speaking off the record with a handful of draft eligible players this year, it seems like the guys who care about rankings and the like are too into themselves, too concerned with what doesn't matter. Can't see Tierney being "one of those guys."

Q. Chris spent time last summer training with Gary Roberts. What have you noticed differently about him that you can attribute to training with one of the best trainers today over last season ? 

JM. As with all trained by Roberts, their conditioning improves by leaps and bounds over just one summer. As for Tierney, he's shown improvement in his overall confidence on the ice. He seems to be more sure of himself. 

Q. At 6' 180 pounds, Chris has good size. Would you like to see him more physical or is he at a good stage there within his game?

JM, He could definitely be more physical. Tierney tends to shy away from the dirty areas of the ice. Not all the time, but it happens.

Q.. Chris can play in any situation he is asked, what is his greatest strength ?

JM. His greatest strength would probably be his play-making. 

Q. With the amount of young players, especially centermen the Knights have and Chris probably more comfortable as a natural center playing that position, is he getting enough quality minutes in your opinion?

JM. It is tough to say with the likes of Namestnikov, Domi and now McKegg all naturals at center. Tierney is a Knight who would do fine on the top two lines but isn't at a point where he would be a dominant center. If he were to get more minutes, and be effective, it would likely be on the wing.

Q. Which of these best describe Chris : Set up man or goal scorer ?

JM. Set-up man. 

Q. Because of the unusually high number of draft eligible players in London and the number of NHL scouts at Knights games, would you say there is a competitive spirit in the locker room and if so, where does Chris fit into that ?

JM. It's tough to say since I don't travel with the team or anything like that, but from my experiences the Knights, including Tierney, are a pretty tight group. Having so many young kids this year has helped them bond and play as a collective. If there is competition, it's healthy competition. 

If you would like to follow John on Twitter, you can do so here.

You can also check out London Community News' Sports section here

Photo courtesy of

No comments:

Post a Comment