For the first time in months, we have some Leafs lineup news to chew on. Well, kind of. On Sunday morning the team announced their roster for phase 3 of the NHL’s Return to Play:
Off to summer camp.
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) July 12, 2020
The roster includes a few surprises among the 18 forwards and 12 defenceman that make up the group of 30 skaters permitted for phase 3.
Up front, the Leafs opted for more center depth in the form of Tyler Gaudet over wingers like Miika Salomaki and Pontus Aberg. The versatile Nic Petan, who put up 31 points in 25 AHL games this season, is the most notable omission among forwards.
Mac Hollowell will be in tough to earn a roster spot for phase 4 but after starting the season with the ECHL’s Newfoundland Growlers, being included in this limited training camp environment speaks to how the Leafs feel about his potential. Teemu Kivihalme flew under the radar a bit this season but was forced into big minutes with the Marlies as injuries on the Leafs blue line depleted the AHL squad’s depth. The organization thinks highly of him but he could fall victim to the numbers game as camp wraps up.
There is a 31 player roster limit – including goaltenders – for phase 4. The Leafs will be taking at least 3 goalies as part of that group, meaning that at least 2 of the skaters on this roster will be sent home at the end of training camp.
With training camps getting underway on Monday, it will be interesting to see where certain players line up as it could tell us a lot about how the Leafs envision their group being put together when they begin their play-in series against Columbus.