The Toronto Maple Leafs organization announced today that the hockey club has signed forward Ryan Tverberg to a future three-year, entry-level contract. The average annual value of the contract is $851,667. Tverberg will join the Toronto Marlies on a professional tryout for the remainder of the 2022-23 regular season and the Calder Cup playoffs.

Tverberg, 21, recorded 30 points (15 goals, 15 assists) in 35 games with the University of Connecticut (NCAA) this season. The Richmond Hill, ON native has posted 69 points (33 goals, 36 assists) through 85 career NCAA games.

“The Maple Leafs organization is very thankful to the University of Connecticut,” said Maple Leafs General Manager Kyle Dubas. “Ryan’s development through his three seasons with the Huskies and subsequent signing today is a testament to the tireless work of head coach Mike Cavanaugh and all the staff within the UConn men’s hockey program.”

Tverberg, a right-shooting forward, was drafted 213th overall in 2020, making him the longest of longshots to ever even see an NHL deal, and yet here we are.

He’s impressed enough to be nominated for the Hobey Baker Award last year, and he’s been noticed by Leafs prospect watchers.

Lots of good information here:

2022 Top 25 Under 25: Ryan Tverberg is #22

Tverberg wasn’t just a late pick, he was the fifth last pick in the entire draft. And Toronto actually “traded up” to take him. At the time, he was coming off of a 51 point season in 47 games in the OJHL. That’s not a great point total for a top prospect for a lesser league. By comparison, in that same season Ayrton Martino, who is a year younger, had 79 points in 48 games. And he became a third round pick. So it’s not really surprising that Tverberg was such a late pick.

After committing to Harvard, where he would have played with Nick Abruzzese, he switched to UConn after the pandemic caused Harvard to cancel their season. His freshman season was unspectacular, and he had 7 points in 14 games. But this past season, Tverberg had a breakout with 32 points in 36 games. He was even an invite to Team Canada’s first World Junior Camp, and was reportedly one of the final cuts. That’s how far he came.

Tverberg is finishing his third season and the University of Connecticut, and will join the Marlies immediately and will be part of that team next year. Because this contract does not take effect until next season, it does not affect the SPC count for this year.

You will notice that the amount is low enough to fall under the emergency recall amount in future years (it’s indexed to the minimum salary) and also will not contain any bonuses. The cap-strapped Leafs don’t offer performance bonuses to players because of the potential rollover issues.

Welcome back to Toronto, Ryan. I hope it’s everything you’ve always dreamed of.