Prospect Ramblings: Leafs add key players, Black Aces, Calder Nominations

Peter Harling

2016-05-02

Nikita Zaitsev

The Toronto Maple Leafs organization has been making plenty of news as of late. The headline news of winning the draft lottery has Toronto fans buzzing but that’s not all that’s happening.

Today the Leafs signed free agent Nikita Zaitsev out of the KHL to a one year contract worth $925,000

{source}<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">As has been widely speculated, <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Leafs?src=hash">#Leafs</a> sign UFA Nikita Zaitsev out of KHL to a 1 year contract via <a href="https://twitter.com/generalfanager">@generalfanager</a> <a href="https://t.co/PnJPlv757P">pic.twitter.com/PnJPlv757P</a></p>&mdash; Peter Harling (@pharling) <a href="https://twitter.com/pharling/status/727203502037078017">May 2, 2016</a></blockquote>

<script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>{/source}

Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello told TSN 1050 they believe Zaitsev who is 24 years old and has plenty of pro experience already will play in their top four next year. Zaitsev is a right handed point man and won the Championship last year, went to the finals this year and has World Championship experience as well. Dobber has his fantasy impact on Zaitsev signing in Toronto here

Andreas Johnson - Photo Courtesy of PensionPlanPuppets.com

The Leafs have also brought one of their top ten prospects over to the Marlies. Andreas Johnson has finished his final season in the SHL and is practicing with the Marlies. No doubt he will get in some playoff games to help the Marlies pursuit of a Calder Championship as well as help gauge if he is ready for the NHL next season, or will see further development time in the AHL. Keep an eye on Johnson who should be widely unowned unless you are in a deeper keeper league as he has top six offensive upside.

With the Erie Otters falling to Mitch Marner and the London Knights, Travis Dermott has also been assigned to the Marlies where he will get his first taste of pro hockey. Dermott rec