Michael Mersch
Image: Univ. of Wisconsin

Michael Mersch

Hometown:

Park Ridge Illinois

Currently Playing In:

Pro

Birthday:

1992-10-02

Position:

LW

Eligible for draft:

2011

Shoots:

Left

Drafted:

2011

Height:

6-2

Acquired:

4th round (110th overall), 2011

Weight:

198 lbs.

<<<<<<< Updated upstream
History

2008-09: Michael Mersch joined the US National Development Team Program’s U-17 squad after competing for Team Illinois the previous year. In 65 games he was the team’s fourth-leading scorer with 27 goals with 19 assists and had 58 PMs. Mersch committed to attending the University of Wisconsin in 2010-11.

2009-10: Mersch skated in 49 games with the US National Development Team U18 program while accelerating his studies at Ann Arbor’s Pioneer High School. He struggled offensively, scoring 4 goals with 10 assists and 30 PMs while developing a more well-rounded game. Mersch graduated high school in three years to be able to play college hockey rather in 2010-11 than spending a season in the USHL.

2010-11: Mersch forced his way into full-time role with Wisconsin as an 18-year-old freshman; skating in 41 games and providing both timely offense and determined physical play. Mersch scored 8 goals with 11 assists and was +23 with 32 PMs as the Badgers finished seventh in the WCHA during a roller coaster season. The Badgers won 12 of 13 games during one mid-season stretch (including splitting a series with eventual national champion Minnesota-Duluth) but then won just two of their last 11 games.

2011-12: Mersch was the third-leading scorer for Wisconsin as a sophomore. Skating in all situations for the Badgers, he scored 14 goals with 16 assists and was minus-five with 37 penalty minutes in 37 games. Seven of Mersch’s goals were scored on the power play. Wisconsin struggled to break the .500 mark, finishing an uncharacteristic 10th in the WCHA. The Badgers forced Denver to overtime in the decisive game of their three-game, first-round series in the WCHA tournament before falling 3-2. Mersch struggled against the powerful Pioneers; finishing minus-four with no points.

2012-13: Mersch was the top scorer for Wisconsin as a junior; leading the Badgers with 23 goals and adding 13 assists in 36 games. Paired with sophomore winger Joseph Labate much of the season, he was +18 with 22 penalty minutes and scored six goals on the power play. The Badgers finished tied for fourth in the WCHA and earned an NCAA bid after capturing the WCHA Broadmoor Trophy; defeating Colorado College, 3-2 in the championship game. Wisconsin lost to Massachusetts-Lowell, 6-1, in the NCAA Northeast Regional tournament.

 2013-14: Mersch signed a three-year entry-level contract with Los Angeles in April 2014 and made his pro hockey debut with AHL affiliate Manchester following his senior season at Wisconsin. He scored 2 goals with 1 assist and was +3 with 2 penalty minutes in seven regular season games with the Monarchs. The Monarchs finished first in the Atlantic Division but were defeated by Norfolk in four games in a best-of-five first round playoff series. Mersch had an assist and an even plus/minus with 2 penalty minutes in four playoff games. He led the Badgers with 22 goals and had 13 assists, finishing +7 with 18 penalty minutes, in 37 games. The Badgers earned an NCAA Tournament berth, defeating Ohio State, 5-4 in overtime, in the championship game of the inaugural Big Ten tournament after finishing second in the regular season. Wisconsin lost 5-2 to North Dakota in the NCAA Midwest Regional semifinals.

Talent Analysis

Mersch is a big bodied and mature player who has made steady progress as a power forward during his career. He is responsible in all areas of the ice and has a very underrated scoring ability and offensive instincts. More of a pure goal scorer than a playmaker, he has a solid two-way game and has improved his offensive upside considerably.

Future

Mersch has been a consistent scorer for new Kings' AHL affiliate Ontario and made his NHL debut with Los Angeles in 2015-16. In a 17-game stint with the Kings he showed glimpses of the straight ahead, determined style that has led to his success at the college level and in his first two AHL seasons. Mersch's size and scoring touch suggest he can be a valuable two-way, second or third line forward.

2011 NHL Draft: Despite lack of star power, Los Angeles Kings made a few picks matter

by Jason Lewis
on
Andy Andreoff - Los Angeles Kings

Photo: Andy Andreoff of the Los Angeles Kings fits the team mold of big, strong, smart players who relish a physical style (courtesy of Bob Frid/Icon Sportswire)

2010 started a new trend in drafting for the Los Angeles Kings. Instead of dealing with a heavy amount of picks and prospects, like the 10 selections they had in the 2009 and 2007 NHL Drafts, and the nine they had in 2008, the Kings started drafting fewer prospects. By virtue of success, and win-now trades, the Kings started depleting their cupboard and drafting opportunities in order to be a competitive team at the NHL level. Read more»

AHL Western Conference Notebook, May, 2016: Reign, Monsters battle for Western supremacy

by Sean Shapiro
on
Zach Werenski - Lake Erie Monsters

Photo: Lake Erie Monsters defenseman and Columbus Blue Jackets prospect Zach Werenski has been impressive in AHL action since turning pro at the end of the 2015-16 NCAA season (courtesy of Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)

Lake Erie Monsters coach Jared Bednar understands the challenge in front of his team as it prepares for the Calder Cup Western Conference Finals against the Ontario Reign.

The Reign are the defending champions, having won the title last season as the Manchester Monarchs, and return 15 players with championship rings. In addition, Ontario is big, physical and plays “Los Angeles Kings-style hockey” that wins in the playoffs. Read more»

‏Maturation and evolution causing movement in Kings Spring Top 20 Prospects

by Jason Lewis
on
Adrian Kempe - LA Kings

Photo: LA Kings top prospect Adrian Kempe plays an advanced pro game despite being still just 19 years old (courtesy of Lee Calkins)

The Los Angeles Kings system remains robust in role players, grinders, and two-way defensemen. This has always seemed to be the case. However, the organization is starting to see a nice evolution from a few players within the system. When you have so few high end picks, you have to hope for the growth of the Mersch’s, the Dowd’s, and the Auger’s of the pipeline to come through for you in filling in the gaps. While some of these players are in the very nascent stages of their careers and development paths, they are starting to rise just like the development team had hoped.

Read more»

AHL Western Conference Notebook, December, 2015: Griffins on a roll, Montour fitting in nicely in rookie campaign

by Sean Shapiro
on
Brandon Montour - San Diego Gulls

Photo: San Diego Gulls defenseman and Anaheim Ducks prospect Brandon Montour split his 2014-15 season between the USHL’s Waterloo Black Hawks, the University of Massachusetts, and the AHL’s Norfolk Admirals (courtesy of the San Diego Gulls Hockey Club)

The Grand Rapids Griffins are named after a mythical creature – one that is part lion, part eagle — but the Detroit Red Wings prospects season has followed the path of another mythical beast.

Let’s just call them the Grand Rapids Phoenix with how they have burned up and then rebuilt under first-year head coach Todd Nelson. Read more»

Los Angeles Kings junior prospects fit the team identity

by Jason Lewis
on
Chaz Reddekopp - Los Angeles Kings

Photo: Kings prospect Chaz Reddekopp brings size and strength to his defensive role but his offense is trending up too (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)

‏The Kings have a fairly large group of CHL representatives this year, many coming out of the 2014 and 2015 NHL Entry drafts. While they have a large numbers of players, they have few upper-round picks representing the team. They also are strictly limited to just two leagues of the CHL: the WHL and the OHL. With eleven players currently playing in the CHL, only two are from the first three rounds of the draft. The Kings are going to need some late rounders to blossom (and they have a few on their way) to really make the best out of a group full of outliers and depth players.

Read more»

Related Articles