Edited to add: This is now official.
It appears that Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Brendan Leispic may be the player claimed by the Vegas Golden Knights:
Rumblings the Toronto Maple Leafs will lose Brendan Leipsic in the expansion draft.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) June 21, 2017
Out of all the Leafs players available to be selected, Leipsic was probably the best of the bunch. So, it’s not really a surprise that he’s Las Vegas bound.
After scoring 51 points in 49 regular season games with the Marlies, the 23-year old looked poised to make the jump up to the Leafs next season as a depth winger or 13th forward. He was certainly one of the better prospects in the Leafs’ thin pool.
Leipsic, originally a Predators third-round pick, arrived in Toronto as part of the Cody Franson deal. He’s spent the last three seasons playing for the Marlies and has appeared in six NHL games to date.
Stats via Elite Prospects
|2007-2008||Winnipeg Monarchs Bntm AAA Div 2||WBAAA2||28||20||15||35||62|
|Winnipeg Monarchs Bantam AAA||WBAAA||2||0||0||0||2|
|2008-2009||Winnipeg Monarchs Bantam AAA||WBAAA||29||16||20||36||38|
|Winnipeg Monarchs City Mdgt||WCML||1||0||0||0||4|
|Winnipeg Monarchs Bantam AAA||John Reid Bantam||5||2||2||4||14|
|2009-2010||Winnipeg Wild Midget AAA||MMHL||41||23||40||63||38|
|Canada Western U17||WHC-17||5||3||2||5||6|
|Canada U20||CAN-RUS Challenge||3||0||0||0||6|
|WHL All-Stars||Jr Super Series||2||0||2||2||2|
|2015-2016||Toronto Maple Leafs||NHL||6||1||2||3||2|
Leipsic is currently a restricted free agent. It’s possible that the Leafs didn’t see much of a place for him on the team, long term. The four left-wing spots on the team look to be locked up and one or both of Carl Grundstrom and Andreas Johnsson might be higher on the depth chart.
I don't think the Leafs will make a side deal to protect Leipsic or Rychel. Organization doesn't appear to be super high on either player.— James Mirtle (@mirtle) June 19, 2017
There was some talk that Toronto were working on a side deal with Vegas to protect some of their exposed players. It looks like the price of such a deal was too high. The Leafs will have to live with losing one of their better prospects.
There’s been some discussion about the Leafs’ choice to protect fourth line winger Matt Martin over prospects like Leipsic or Kerby Rychel.
Should the Leafs have protected Leipsic over Martin?
This poll is closed
Can we stop talking about Matt Martin