Flyers Prospect Watch: Hobey Baker finalist Cooper Marody opens up on his unique accomplishment

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Within the next few seasons, the Philadelphia Flyers hope to become a more consistent, gritty hard-nosed, Stanley Cup Contender. The proud orange clad fans would love to see another parade down Broad Street, with the hit song by Queen being played in the background, “We are The Champions.”

Flyers General Manager Ron Hextall hopes to aid some of the scoring issues that has plagued this team for the past few seasons, by filling holes through the draft. With the likes of Oskar Lindblom, Mikhail Vorobyev, Mike Vecchione, German Rubtsov, and Morgan Frost. Just who remains down on the farm that could help the organization find more consistency with scoring? Meet a hidden gem, Hobey Baker Award finalist (given to the top National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s ice hockey player), Forward Cooper Marody, as Marody states, “I have always dreamed of playing in the NHL and know someday I will earn that opportunity.”

Marody was born on December 20, 1996, in Brighton, MI. The Flyers drafted him in the 6th round of the 2015 NHL Draft. Like most kids in Michigan, Marody started playing hockey at a young age. His passion for the game found himself playing for the University of Michigan for the 2015-16 season. He registered 10 goals, and 14 assists for a total of 24 points in 32 games played. After a decent season with Michigan, just who is this young prospect?

I like to think I have good vision on the ice along with good puck handling skills that allow me to make good plays to my linemates. I also think I have a good shot. I believe I am good at winning puck battles on the walls in the offense and defensive zone. Also, I’m reliable in the face off circle.”

This 20 year old, young prospect in Marody became academically ineligible for the first half of the 2016-17 season. Marody knew the importance of not only the game of hockey, but the realization that there is life after the sport of hockey. He worked very hard in school, and was able to improve his grades tremendously. Somehow he found a way to play in the final 18 games of the season for the Wolverines. For the season, he registered 5 goals, and 10 assists for a total of 15 points in 18 games played. Marody showed determination and grit to improve his grades, as he leaned on his parents for advice like always.

“I think from a young age my parents preached the message to me of earning everything you get. They always told me to follow my dreams and they would do everything they could to help support that dream. I have gone through a lot of ups and downs in my career and my parents have been there for me every step of the way and I am very thankful for that.”

Marody entered the 2017-18 season determined to be a leader on and off the ice. He has faced some unique challenges in the past, but Marody wanted to conquer all the odds and be the player he knew he could be.

“Just be consistent every single day on and off the ice. I believe the most important word in sports is consistency. I try to prepare each day as if I am playing a game. If it’s hydration, nutrition, sleep, or even life choices, I believe each decision you make off the ice affect the results you will get on the ice. Also, I wanted to come in to my third season as a reliable leader for my teammates to seek guidance from.” 

The Wolverine product, Marody just wants to show people he belongs in the NHL. If one has seen him play these past few seasons at Michigan, then they would have noticed his silky hands. He has a lethal wrist shot, to go with his good vision of the ice. Moreover, Marody is out to prove that he can do this when given the chance, but remembers those that have helped him in the past.

I have just continued to work with people who have helped me and beloved in me since I was young. Back when I was a Junior Varsity Michigan High School hockey player I worked with a guy named Brandon Naurato on skills and goal scoring. As the years went by I continued to stick with Brandon and his hockey school and he has helped become the player I am today.”

This young stud in Marody continues, “In addition, Michigan Strength Coach Joe Maher has helped get my body feeling strong and confident with great spring and summer workouts preparing for the season. Also, lifelong strength coach Nick Cabauatan has helped with supplemental workouts when our team has been away from Ann Arbor. I have also worked with Nick since I was really young.”

What this young prospect from the state of Michigan, didn’t expect was to be a Hobey Baker Award Finalist in his junior season. It shows just how good Marody really can be. For the 2017-18 season, Marody has tallied 11 goals, and 23 assists for a total of 34 points in 30 games played. He couldn’t be more thrilled at this great achievement, but Marody realizes it wouldn’t have happened without his teammates.

“It’s a tremendous honor which is definitely a reflection of my linemates and my great teammates at Michigan. My family and I are very thankful for the the honor. With that being said, it is just a nomination and I have to continue to prove each day why I was nominated.”

Hopefully, Marody continues to mold into a hidden gem. His unselfish attitude cannot be taught, and Marody can pay huge dividends for the Flyers in the near future. Yes, Marody was a late round draft pick, but Tom Brady was also drafted in the 6th round. As Marody completes the interview, he wanted to say one last thing:

Growing up in Michigan, I always loved watching Zetterberg and Datsyuk. I studied the way they both played ever since I was little. I also admired that they were both drafted very late in the draft and still became some of the best players in the NHL.”

Mandatory Photo Credit: Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire

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