Toronto Maple Leafs – Offseason Prospect System Review

by Hayden Soboleski on August 27, 2018

 

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Thanks for joining us for our August 31-in-31 series! Every day this month we will be taking a look at each team and diving into their prospect depth charts, risers and fallers, graduating prospects, and top ten prospects in the system.

 

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Offseason moves

 

Let’s start with the big one. John Tavares coming in means there is only one center-ice spot available, but it’s unlikely that two would have been filled from within anyways. New signing Par Lindholm will get a fair chance to hold on to the 4C role, Frederik Gauthier will fight for it once again out of camp but is an unlikely candidate. The current AHL centermen aren’t knocking on the NHL’s door for the time being.

 

Signing Tyler Ennis for a potential 4LW spot is bad news once again for Josh Leivo, who gets blocked out unless he gets tried on the RW side. He can still earn that spot with a solid showing in camp and pre-season (as could Engvall or Marchment in theory, but they would have to take big steps over the summer to beat out the more experienced options).


The team also signed KHL standout Igor Ozhiganov to add some depth at RHD – this means Connor Carrick still wont have a guaranteed spot despite a new deal in place, and Justin Holl will have a bit more competition if he wants to make the jump. 

 

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Graduating players

 

They’re still featured as prospects in this article since they haven’t played full NHL seasons, but after their tryout periods in 2017-18 Travis Dermott, Kasperi Kapanen, and Andreas Johnsson can effectively be called NHLers at this point. They will be in the lineup from day-one.

 

Par Lindholm looks like a good bet to see at the very least a few chances as 4C, and if he doesn’t “graduate” successfully he may do the same as Aaltonen and return to Europe rather than spend time in the AHL. So despite the excellent shot at a spot, he is a risky fantasy pickup.

 

The right side of the Leafs defense is relatively weak, making this a position where prospects who stand out in camp or pre-season may get a few looks. I wouldn’t bet on them graduating to the NHL this year, but seeing guys like Justin Holl or Timothy Liljegren in a few games throughout the year as injuries hit wouldn’t surprise me. If they’re brought in due to struggles, they may very well hold down a spot for a while, just like Dermott did in 2017-18 after initially being an injury fill-in.

 

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Risers

  1. Andreas Johnsson – NHL tryout looked good and AHL Playoffs MVP sealed the deal. Will be a full-time NHLer in 2018-19.
  2. Travis Dermott – Was outstanding in 37 NHL games last year, accelerating his timeline dramatically.
  3. Justin Holl – Jumped up the depth chart thanks to a strong AHL campaign and 2G in 2 NHL games.

 

Fallers

  1. Josh Leivo – Got leapfrogged by Johnsson on the left-wing and still hasn’t got a fair shot.
  2. Frederik Gauthier – Has had a few tryout periods, and just doesn’t look good in the NHL.
  3. Calle Rosen – Did nothing wrong, but Dermott and Borgman had good years and have established themselves ahead of him.

 

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Prospect Depth Chart

AHL-only contracts not included

Anticipated 2018-19 leagues, still TBD

 

Left Wing

Andreas Johnsson, NHL

Josh Leivo, NHL

Pierre Engvall, AHL

Mason Marchment, AHL

Dmytro Timashov, AHL

Brady Ferguson, AHL

Martins Dzierkals, KHL

Vladimir Bobylev, MHL

Pontus Holmberg, SHL

Nikolai Chebykin, VHL

 

Center

Par Lindholm, NHL or AHL

Adam Brooks, AHL

Frederik Gauthier, AHL

Riley Stotts, WHL

Semyon Der-Arguchintsev, OHL

Vladislav Kara, VHL

Dakota Joshua, NCAA

Ryan McGregor, OHL

 

Right Wing

Kasperi Kapanen, NHL

Carl Grundstrom, AHL

Trevor Moore, AHL

Jeremy Bracco, AHL

Yegor Korshkov, KHL

Semyon Kizimov, MHL

 

Left Defence

Travis Dermott, NHL

Andreas Borgman, AHL

Calle Rosen, AHL

Rasmus Sandin, SHL

Andrew Nielsen, AHL

Martin Marincin, AHL

Fedor Gordeev, OHL

Filip Kral, WHL

James Greenway, USHL

Ryan O’Connell, NCAA

 

Right Defence

Timothy Liljegren, AHL

Justin Holl, AHL

Igor Ozhiganov, AHL

Sean Durzi, OHL or AHL

Jordan Subban, AHL

Jesper Lindgren, AHL

Eemeli Rasanen, KHL

Mac Hollowell, OHL

 

Goalie

Garret Sparks, AHL or NHL

Calvin Pickard, AHL

Kasimir Kaskisuo, AHL

Joseph Woll, NCAA

Ian Scott, WHL

Zachary Bouthillier, QMJHL

Eamon McAdam, ECHL

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Top 10 Fantasy Prospects

 

  1. Timothy Liljegren
  2. Andreas Johnsson
  3. Kasperi Kapanen
  4. Travis Dermott
  5. Garett Sparks
  6. Justin Holl
  7. Carl Grundstrom
  8. Rasmus Sandin
  9. Calvin Pickard
  10. Sean Durzi

 

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Thanks for reading and if you missed it, check out the July 31-in -31 covering the Leafs’ 2018 draft here.

 

Hayden Soboleski

@soboleskih