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Toronto Maple Leafs prospect report: Canada wins junior gold

Canada West and Ryan O’Connell win the World Junior A Challenge

United States v Canada - Gold Medal Game - 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images

It was a pretty quiet week for the prospects. The NCAA is on winter break, and Räsänen left the Kingston Frontenacs to prepare for the World Juniors with Finland. No one had more than one point last week so we’re light on highlights for you.

The biggest one was Ryan O’Connell and Canada West winning the gold medal at the World Junior A Challenge. They defeated the United States 5-1 on Saturday night. This was Canada West’s sixth gold medal, and funny enough only Canada West or the United States have won gold at this tournament. In fact, in 11 tournaments, Canada West won gold or silver eight times, and faced off against the United States four times - the record in that match up in the final is now 3-1 Canada West.

O’Connell will now travel back to Penticton and the BCHL.

Ontario Hockey League

#77 - Eemeli Räsänen (D)
Kingston Frontenacs

Räsänen is at Finnish camp for the World Juniors.

#55 - Keaton Middleton (D) - 0G, 0A, +1
Saginaw Spirit - 17-12-3-0

Dec. 13th: @ Sarnia Sting
W 2-1 - No Points
Dec. 15th: @ Flint Firebirds
W 3-0 - 0G, 0A, +1
Dec. 16th: vs Windsor Spitfires
L 5-1 - No Points

The Spirit won two our of three and Middleton played well defensively. The spirit are making the best of their schedule to try and climb high in the standings to secure themselves a playoff spot. Oh, and they’re wearing Spider-man jerseys next week.

#15 - Fedor Gordeev (D) / #52 - Nicolas Mattinen (D)
0G, 0A, +2 / 0G, 1A, -3
Flint Firebirds - 10-20-3-0

Dec. 13th: @ Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds
L 4-1 - 0G, 0A, +1 / 0G, 0A, -3
Dec. 15th: vs Saginaw Spirit
L 3-0 - No Points / 0G, 0A, -2
Dec. 16th: @ Sarnia Sting
W 5-2 - 0G, 0A, +1 / 0G, 1A, +2

The Firebirds are sticking to the bottom of the OHL, but they did beat one of the top teams in the Sarnia Sting.

#19 - Ryan McGregor (F) - 0G, 1A, -4
Sarnia Sting - 25-8-2-0

Dec. 13th: vs Saginaw Spirit
L 2-1 - 0G, 0A, -1
Dec. 15th: @ London Knights
W 6-2 - 0G, 1A, -1
Dec. 16th: vs Flint Firebirds
L 5-2 - 0G, 0A, -2

The Sting lost top spot to the Greyhounds, and would lose two two bottom teams in the OHL in the Spirit and Firebirds.


Western Hockey League

#33 - Ian Scott (G) - 74sv, 85sh, .871sv%
Prince Albert Raiders - 13-14-5-2

Dec. 12th: @ Swift Current Broncos
L 2-1 - 27sv, 29sh, .931sv%
Dec. 13th: vs Lethbridge Hurricanes
W 3-2 - 28sv, 30sh, .933sv%
Dec. 15th: vs Kelowna Rockets
L 7-3 - 19sv, 26sh, .731 sv% (54:38 played)

Scott was doing really well last week until the Kelowna Rocket came to town. Scott had a .932 save percentage until the Rockets put seven goals past him on 26 shots on Friday night.


World Junior A Challenge

#24 - Ryan O'Connell (D) - No Points
Canada West

Round Robin

Dec. 10th: vs Russia
L 5-2 - No Points
Dec. 12th: vs USA
L 2-1 - No Points

Quarter Finals

Dec. 13th: vs Canada East
W 4-3 OT - Did Not Play

Semi Finals

Dec. 14th: vs Czech Republic
W 5-1 - Did Not Play

Finals

Dec. 16th: vs USA
W 5-1 - No Points

O’Connell didn’t get top ice time in the tournament, but he was part of the Canada West team that would win the gold medal over the Americans.


NCAA

#13 - Nolan Vesey (F)
Maine Black Bears
Overall: 1-1 / Conference: 1-1

Maine is on break and does not play again until December 29th.

#14 - JD Greenway (D)
Wisconsin Badgers
Overall: 1-1 / Conference: 1-1

Wisconsin is on break and does not play again until January 5th.

#31 - Joseph Woll (G)
Boston College Eagles
Overall: 1-1 / Conference: 1-1

Boston College is on break and does not play again until January 5th.

#8 - Dakota Joshua (F)
Ohio State Buckeyes
Overall: 1-1 / Conference: 1-1

Ohio State is on break and does not play again until December 29th.

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