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Toronto Maple Leafs prospect report: It’s tournament season

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Three players get ready for international tournaments this month.

Aaron Bell/OHL Images

It’s tournament season, and all across the land players of all ages are participating in and getting ready for all kinds of hockey tournaments. From house league to the biggest stage in the world, the best are getting ready to prove themselves.

For the Maple Leafs only a couple on this list are participating in Christmas tournaments.

Eemeli Räsänen and Joseph Woll are heading to IIHF Mens U20 World championships training camps for Finland and the United States respectively. Neither are exactly a lock to make it, but both will have to play their way out of a spot to not go to Buffalo this year.

Taking one step down, Ryan O'Connell is playing for Canada West in the World Junior ‘A’ Challenge tournament taking place this week in Truro, Nova Scotia. It’s a showcase run by Hockey Canada for players playing Junior A level hockey - think the OJHL, BCHL, USHL - rather than Major Junior and the NCAA where the IIHF tournament takes players from.

With that set up, let’s look at last week’s games.

Ontario Hockey League

#77 - Eemeli Räsänen (D) - 0G, 1A, -1
Kingston Frontenacs - 16-8-3-3

Dec. 8th: vs Niagara IceDogs
L 3-1 - 0G, 0A, -1
Dec. 9th: vs Sudbury Wolves
W 3-2 - 0G, 1A

Räsänen assisted on one goal last week as he played his final games before leaving for Finland’s world juniors camp.

#55 - Keaton Middleton (D) - 0G, 0A, -1
Saginaw Spirit - 15-11-3-0

Dec. 9th: @ Hamilton Bulldogs
L 7-1 - 0G, 0A, -1
Dec. 10th: @ Oshawa Generals
W 3-1 - No Points

Saginaw recovered from a blowout loss to the Bulldogs with a solid win over Oshawa.

#15 - Fedor Gordeev (D) / #52 - Nicolas Mattinen (D)
0G, 1A / 0G, 1A, -1
Flint Firebirds - 9-18-3-0

Dec. 8th: @ Kitchener Rangers
L 5-4 OT - 0G, 1A, -1 / No Points
Dec. 9th: @ Owen Sound Attack
L 5-4 - 0G, 0A, +1 / 0G, 1A, -1

The Firebirds keep their dive for last place alive, losing both games 5-4 last week.

#19 - Ryan McGregor (F) - 1G, 1A, +2
Sarnia Sting - 24-6-2-0

Dec. 6th: @ Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds
L 6-3 - No Points
Dec. 8th: vs Erie Otters
W 7-4 - 0G, 0A, +1
Dec. 9th: vs Peterborough Petes
W 3-1 - 1G, 1A, +1

The Sting lost first place to the Greyhounds, but won the following two games, giving some hope that they’ll be able to keep up with the Greyhounds at the top of the OHL.

Western Hockey League

#33 - Ian Scott (G) - 89sv, 101sh, .881sv%
Prince Albert Raiders - 12-12-5-2

Dec. 5th: @ Swift Current Broncos
L 5-4 OT - Did Not Play
Dec. 6th: vs Medicine Hat Tigers
L 5-4 SO - 33sv, 37sh, .892sv%
Dec. 8th vs Kamloops Blazers
W 6-5 - 35sv, 40sh, .875sv%
Dec. 10th: @ Saskatoon Blades
L 3-2 - 21sv, 24sh, .875sv%

Scott was alright this week, doing what he could for the Raiders, all of the losses were one goal games, nothing too devastating.

Junior A

#24 - Ryan O'Connell (D)
Canada West - World Junior ‘A’ Challenge

O’Connell isn’t with the Penticton Vees this week or last as he’s playing for Canada West at the World Junior ‘A’ Challenge, being held in Truro, Nova Scotia.

Canada West played one warm up game last week ahead of the tournaments premiere last night.

Dec. 8th: vs Russia
W 4-2 - 0G, 1A

The tournament is streaming online, and you can find info here.


#13 - Nolan Vesey (F) - 0G, 1A, -2
Maine Black Bears
Overall: 8-7-1 / Conference: 4-4-1

Dec. 8th: @ Quinnipac
W 7-4 - 0G, 0A, -2
Dec. 9th: @ Quinnipac
W 5-3 - 0G, 1A

The Black Bears won two in a row and are slowly climbing up the rankings.

#14 - JD Greenway (D)
Wisconsin Badgers
Overall: 10-9-2-0 / Conference: 4-5-1-0

Dec. 8th: vs Notre Dame
L 3-2 - Did Not Play
Dec. 9th: vs Notre Dame
L 6-2 - Did Not Play

Greenway is still trying to work his way into game shape and back into the line up.

#31 - Joseph Woll (G) - 4sv, 8sh, .500sv%
Boston College Eagles
Overall: 9-7-2 / Conference: 9-3-0

Dec. 9th: vs Northeastern
L 5-2 - 4sv, 8sh, .500sv% (played 23:16)

Woll must have had his upcoming trip to Buffalo on his mind, getting pulled just moments into the second period after allowing four goals on eight shots.

#8 - Dakota Joshua (F) - 0G, 2A, +1
Ohio State Buckeyes
Overall: 10-4-4 / Conference: 5-4-1

Dec. 8th: vs Minnesota
W 2-1 OT - 0G, 1A, +1
Dec. 9th: vs Minnesota
W 4-1 - 0G, 1A

Prospects points tracker

Player League Points Games PPG NHLe
Player League Points Games PPG NHLe
Dakota Joshua (F) Big 10 24 30 0.80 22.96
Nolan Vesey (F) Hockey East 25 37 0.68 20.50
Ryan McGregor (F) OHL 29 47 0.62 16.19
Ryan O’Connell (D) BCHL 12 23 0.52 9.84
Eemeli Räsänen (D) OHL 30 59 0.51 13.34
Nicolas Mattinen (D) OHL 29 62 0.47 12.27
Keaton Middleton (D) OHL 23 61 0.38 9.89
Fedor Gordeev (D) OHL 23 64 0.36 9.43
JD Greenway (F) Big 10 3 12 0.25 7.18