Cleveland Monsters fans were stunned when their favorite goalie, Anton Forsberg, was traded alongside Brandon Saad to the Chicago Blackhawks for Artemi Panarin and Tyler Motte.
No one truly knew what to expect when Motte hit the ice on October 7th, 2017 in Cleveland. He flew under the radar for the first three games of the season spending the time feeling out his line.
By the fourth game, Motte was making noise and catching the eye of everyone nearby. His first goal and first multi-point game of the season came on October 21st, 2017 against the San Jose Barracuda.
The next weekend Motte tallied four goals against the Ontario Reign. Three of those goals were scored in the same game.
His outstanding play peaked the Jackets interest and they recalled him from the Monsters after the four goal weekend. Motte spent the bulk of his time with Columbus this season. Whenever he was sent back to Cleveland, Motte made a lot of noise.
He scored goals, set up plays, jawed the ref a bit, and pushed opponents around when they were overly aggressive. It was clear Motte was a welcome addition to the Monsters.
What struck me the most was Motte’s humility.
After scoring a hattrick and notching six points over three games, he sheepishly walked out to the media for post-game presser.
Motte gave most of the credit to his linemates.
Yes, Motte,who just scored a hat trick and earned his second multi-point game of the season gave the bulk of the credit to his linemates.
“It’s not just about me. I had some great linemates. We had some great chemistry going tonight.” - Tyler Motte (10.27.2017 - after notching a hattrick)
He made sure everyone knew those goals would not have happened without guys like Carter Camper and Hayden Hodgson.
When pressed about the issue even more, Motte explained why things were clicking with the team.
“We’ve just communicated over the last couple of weeks and continue to talk about what we see on the ice, what plays are available.” - Tyler Motte on his linemates and Zac Dalpe (10.27.2017)
Yet again, Motte could have easily taken credit for the Monsters’ win but chose to acknowledge teamwork and communication.
Every team needs a humble man like Motte in the lockerroom.
A man who slightly blushes when staff and fans compliment him on an absolutely filthy goal.
A man who looks almost shocked when people congratulate him on a job well done.
A man who makes sure his teammates get the credit they deserve.
Motte’s humility will serve him well as he continues along the path to greatness.
Farewell Motte, you will be missed.