Skip to content

Florida GM Tallon on ’07 first-rounder Ellerby: “It’s time for him to grab the bull by the horns”

Nov 7, 2012, 1:08 PM EDT

Comments Off
Keaton Ellerby

Keaton Ellerby is officially on notice.

The Florida Panthers defenseman — who’s failed to make good on the promise that saw him taken 10th overall at the 2007 NHL Entry Draft — was called out by GM Dale Tallon in a recent interview with The Hockey Writers (via the Florida Sun Sentinel).

“Now it’s time for him to grab the bull by the horns,” Tallon explained. “He has the ability, he’s a great skater, he’s got a good shot. I challenged him at the exit meeting that he needs to get prepared this off-season and get stronger mentally and physically.”

Ellerby took a step backwards last season after what appeared to be a breakthrough 2010-11 campaign (54GP, 2G-10A-12PTS, 16:06 average TOI). The 24-year-old only appeared in 40 regular season contests, recorded just five points (no goals) and saw his ice time dip to 15:23 per game.

To make matters worse, a lower-body injury limited him to just one appearance in the Panthers’ opening round playoff loss to the Devils.

Ellerby also catches a lot of heat because of his draft position and the defensemen taken shortly afterward — the Rangers’ Ryan McDonagh went 12th overall and St. Louis’ Kevin Shattenkirk went 14th. Both are thriving on their respective clubs: McDonagh finished 11th in Norris voting last season, Shattenkirk 18th.

That said, brighter days could be ahead for Ellerby. He signed a one-year, $700,000 extension with the Panthers this summer and projects to be a top-six blueliner this season.

Featured video

Chances Blue Jackets bounce back?
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. D. Backes (3281)
  2. T. Oshie (3111)
  3. M. Duchene (2779)
  4. B. Bishop (2532)
  5. S. Mason (2461)
  1. R. Getzlaf (2443)
  2. O. Palat (2299)
  3. H. Zetterberg (1987)
  4. N. MacKinnon (1935)
  5. R. Emery (1611)