MODO of the Swedish second league Allsvenskan is reporting that the Maple Leafs have loaned Jesper Lindgren to the team for next season.

Lindgren spent several years in the MODO system as a junior until moving to Finland for two years to play for HPK in the Liiga. He has played at the SHL level in Sweden for a few games in 2014 - 2016 until the team was relegated. He has one full season in Allsvenskan in 2016-2017, where he had 24 points in 50 games and played a significant role.

The Leafs drafted Lindgren in 2015 in the fourth round. They signed him to an SPC in May of 2018, and he will finish that ELC at the end of the 2020-2021 season. Because he is now 23, this season in Sweden (as long as he plays at least 10 games) counts as a professional season for arbitration rules, and he will be an RFA with arbitration rights in the 2021 NHL offseason. Lindgren played only 31 games for the Marlies this season, due to injuries.

The Leafs have already loaned newly-signed Mikko Lehtonen and Egor Korshkov to their former KHL teams. All of these loans are assumed to have NHL out clauses, so the players can be recalled if the Leafs want them back once they are actually playing next season’s games.

There are a host of players under NHL contract to the Leafs for 2020-2021, who played this season either in junior or the AHL. Many of them are European, and all of them could be eligible for a loan as the European seasons gear up to open in September and October.

The full list with the current assignments looks like this:

Maple Leafs signed juniors/minor leaguers

NameBirthdatePos2019/2020 Team2020/2021 TeamJunior Eligible
Mikko LehtonenJan 16, 1994LDJokerit, KHLJokerit, KHL
Yegor KorshkovJuly 10, 1996RW/LWToronto Marlies, AHLLokomotiv, KHL
Jesper LindgrenMay 19, 1997RDToronto Marllies, AHLMODO, Allsvenskan
Kenny AgostinoApril 30, 1992LWToronto Marllies, AHL
Kalle KossilaApril 14, 1993CToronto Marllies, AHL
Alexander BarabanovJune 17, 1994RW/LWSKA, KHL
Nic PetanMarch 22, 1995LW/RWToronto Marllies, AHL
Teemu KivihalmeJune 14, 1995LDToronto Marllies, AHL
Adam BrooksMay 6, 1996CToronto Marllies, AHL
Joseph DuszakJuly 22, 1997RDToronto Marllies, AHL
Kristians RubinsDecember 11, 1997LDToronto Marllies, AHL
Joseph WollJuly 12, 1998GToronto Marllies, AHL
Mac HollowellSeptember 26, 1998RDToronto Marllies, AHL
Ian ScottJanuary 11, 1999GToronto Marllies, AHL
Timothy LiljegrenApril 30, 1999RDToronto Marllies, AHL
Filip KralOctober 20, 1999DSpokane Chiefs, WHL
Semyon Der-ArguchintsevSeptember 15, 2000CPeterboroough Petes, OHLOverager
Mikhail AbramovMarch 26, 2001CVictoriaville Tigres, QMJHLYes
Nick RobertsonSeptember 11, 2001LWPeterboroough Petes, OHLYes

If you’re not seeing some names you expect, likely they are expiring RFAs or UFAs who are not currently under contract for the next NHL season.

As more and more players are loaned to European teams, the competition for spots will get tougher. Players already on those teams will move down, then prospects will move back to junior teams, and U20 players might end up on U18 teams instead.

The question of how long these players will stay on these teams is also a very open one. Egor Korshkov should be expected to play most of the season, assuming the KHL even has a season. Several teams collectively decided to cancel all of their preseason games in Moscow today because of COVID-19 concerns in the Russian capital.