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#5 Robbie Russo
Pos: D
D.O.B.: 2/15/93
From: Westmont, IL
Height: 6'
Weight: 191
Shoots: Right
Drafted: 2011 draft 4th rnd, 95th overall by New York Islanders (NHL)
Acquired: Signed to 2-yr contract by Detroit (NHL) 8/16/15
Plus: Great first pass... Excellent puck mover, sees the ice well... Confident player with good pateience...
Minus: Size not ideal... Skating could use some work, especially first step...
Organizational Comments: Griffins Coach Todd Nelson "The thing that makes him good and why he's doing so well is he's got great poise with the puck, he's able to find options on breakouts, so he keeps his end clean with that. One thing that's getting noticed with his plus/minus in this league is plays very good positional hockey, where he never puts himself in a bad spot. He plays a simple game. He jumps up in the rush when needed, but he's just playing solid hockey with us."
What GRC says: 2015-16 Russo capped off a fantastic rookie season upping his offensive contributions and leading the team's defenders in points with 39. Much has already been made of his league leading +40 defensive rating which is among the AHL's top season totals of all time. While he played with a calmness and experience that far exceeded his rookie status, he did show he still had some work to do towards the end of the season when he struggled a bit with the quicker pace and a less sheltered role leading into the playoffs. He will return next season and could turn a strong start into his first NHL recall.
2016-17 After a solid first half, Russo played well enough to earn an extended NHL audition, seeing action in 19 games in Detroit. Upon his return his game had changed, and he brought a much more physical element, showing off some grit and banging in front of the net and along the boards. As the post-season progressed he really looked to have a hard time adjusting to the pace and struggled with his confidence. He made numerous mistakes defensively and was the shakiest defenseman on the Griffins blueline. He will attempt to rebuild his confidence and find his game going into training camp, but will likely require more AHL "seasoning. "
Role: Offensive Defenseman
Projection: NHL Top 4 Defenseman


8/16/15 Signed 2 yr contract with Detroit (NHL)
10/4/15 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)
10/8/16 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)
3/5/17 Recalled by Detroit (NHL)
4/10/17 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)
7/1/17 RFA - Qualified - Signed 2 yr Contract with Detroit (NHL)
9/6/17 Signed 2 yr contract with Detroit (NHL)
9/30/17 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)