Leafs Prospect Update – October 12, 2014

Johnson off to Strong Start in Sweden

Enough can’t be said of Andreas Johnson’s start to the year. Before his SHL regular season even began, Johnson and his Frolunda Indians dominated the double round-robin portion of the Champions Hockey League. In five CHL games so far, Johnson has amassed eight goals and 17 points, good for second in tournament scoring behind teammate Mathis Olimb. Read that again… 17 points! In five games! #nails

Having finished at the top of their group, Frolunda has earned a spot in the CHL playoff bracket and will face off against Finland’s Tappara Tampere in early November. That’s when the real fun begins, as the CHL bottom feeders have already gone home, and every game is an elimination game.

In the SHL, Johnson is fourth in team scoring with three goals and three assist in 10 games. Johnson certainly has a high offensive ceiling, it’s just too bad he isn’t a Canadian and won’t help the Toronto Maple Leafs win a damn thing.

Verhaeghe Finds the Scoresheet

Carter Verhaeghe finally found the back of the net after going pointless in his first three games of the season. 

Verhaeghe opened the scoring on Friday night with a shorthanded goal in a 4-3 Niagara Ice Dogs loss to the Ottawa 67’s. Yesterday, Verhaeghe added a goal and assist to his stat line in a rough 8-5 loss to the Belleville Bulls.

Five straight losses, three points and a -4 rating is certainly not the way Verhaeghe wanted to start his year. Some of that might have to do with the fact that Verhaeghe’s right-hand man, Brendan Perlini, suffered a hand injury during the Arizona Coyotes’ prospect camp and is shelved while he recovers from surgery. Last year, Verhaeghe and Perlini ran roughshod over the competition, and finished the season with 82 points and 71 points respectively.

Despite the slow start, it’d still be a big surprise if Verhaeghe doesn’t exceed last year’s numbers.

Toninatio, Cameranesi Kick Off NCAA Season

Dominic Toninato and Tony Cameranesi, both of the University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs, have put up points in each of their opening weekend games.

In Friday night’s 4-3 loss to their cross-town rivals, the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers, Toninato scored twice, with Cameranesi assisting on one of the two. This afternoon, Cameranesi’s goal and Toninato’s goal and assist lifted the Minnesota-Duluth over Notre Dame by a score of 3-0.

Now a Junior, Cameranesi is looking to bounce back from a somewhat disappointing sophomore season. Last year, Cameranesi scored seven goals and 21 points, a significant drop from his 14 goals and 34 points as a freshmen.

Toninato, with three goals and one assist so far, is well on his way to topping his seven goals and 15 points scored last season.

Other News

  • William Nylander was returned to MODO last week, but it wasn’t until yesterday that the Leafs’ 2014 1st round pick was introduced to hockey fans in Ornskoldsvik. Of course, he was just introduced via a first intermission interview, but it’s a start. Nylander has signed a contract for the remainder of the SHL season and should begin playing again soon.
  • Cody Donaghey is off to a nice start, with two goals and six points in five games. The QMJHL is hilarious, because Donaghey is better than a point-per-game player and he’s still only 20th in scoring by a defenceman. 
  • Pierre Engvall has five points in five games with Frolunda’s J20 squad, and was recently loaned to IK Oskarshamn in the Allsvenskan to get a couple games in against men.
  • 2014 draft pick J.J. Piccinich played his first game for Boston University yesterday. Piccinich finished the game with one shot on goal. Unrelated, teammate Jack Eichel had two goals and two assists. I hear he’s pretty good.
  • Dakota Joshua won’t reach the NCAA until next season, but he’s off to a fine start in the USHL. In five games, Joshua has two goals and six points, and leads the Sioux Falls Stampeded in scoring. He’s currently tied for 8th in league scoring.
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