The Leafs Rookie tournament kicks off today and yours truly will be in attendance for the York University v. Florida Panthers at 4pm and our very own Toronto Maple Leafs v. Montreal Canadiens at 7pm. Check back here to see how our rookies fared, especially Colton Yellow Horn.
Colton played for 2005's U18 Canadian team and posted 75 points in 67 with the Lethbridge Hurricanes to place 12th in WHL scoring. Unfortunately, he is 5'7" but that does not matter in the new NHL where guys like Steve Sullivan (should be a Leaf), Paul Kariya (could have been a Leaf), and Saku Koivu (the only Hab I respect) can flourish.
"We had scouts watching a lot of his games and he's just one of those guys that makes an impression on you by the end of the night," said Mike Penny, the Leafs' director of player personnel. "You look at his stats through junior and his name kept popping up in the draft, but he went right through twice. Maybe players his size have it tougher, but he signed our ATO offer (amateur tryout contract) and we'll see what happens."
The Leafs biggest off-season acquisition (by size) is acclimating himself well to his new surroundings. There is even a little clue as to how Gill reacted to last year's rule changes
Gill began drastically altering his style in his final season with the Boston Bruins and his new team should be the full beneficiary.
Which is good news considering that he did struggle with the rule changes quite a bit (as did most players that did not play during the lockout). He is even getting along with Darcy Tucker who is the classic 'Love to play with him, Hate to play against'
"It was hard to turn off that hate switch," Gill said with a laugh. "He's someone everyone hates to play against, but he's the aggressive sort of player you would want on your team."