The additions of defensemen Morgan Rielly and Matt Finn at the 2012 NHL Draft have bolstered what was once a weak point in the Toronto Maple Leafs’ system. They are added to a list of names such as Korbinian Holzer, Jesse Blacker, Stuart Percy, and Petter Granberg that are in the fold currently. Each player offers a different dynamic that should complement the team’s defensive core if they continue to progress in their development.
The Toronto Maple Leafs' system includes extensive depth at all positions, which should soon pay major dividends. Pending an extended lockout, there is expectation for strong competition from within, as a number of players are expected to graduate to the professional level. Recent draftees Morgan Rielly and Matt Finn find themselves ranked in the top-five for the Fall Top 20 rankings. Other new faces to the list include NCAA forward standout Spencer Abbot and Swedish defenseman Petter Granberg.
With the Los Angeles Kings hoisting their first Stanley Cup and every major hockey tournament around the world finally finished, the attention of the hockey world can now focus on the 2012 NHL Draft.
Last year, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins effectively ended the OHL's dominance atop the NHL Draft when he was selected first overall by the Edmonton Oilers. This year, the Oilers may start a new streak by calling an OHL player's name with the first pick for the fifth time in six years.
Matt Finn is enjoying his experience at the Home Hardware CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game in Kelowna, perhaps due in part to the fact that he is among friends.
The 17-year-old defenseman traveled to Kelowna with Guelph Storm teammate Scott Kosmachuk. The pair have been close friends for many years, having grown up playing minor hockey together in Toronto. And upon their arrival, they were able to re-connect with Adam Pelech (Erie Otters) and Scott Laughton (Oshawa Generals), another of their minor hockey acquaintances from Toronto.