J.J. Piccinich has sealed a future with the Toronto Marlies. The Maple Leafs’ 2014 4th round draft pick signed a two year AHL contract today. It is not yet clear if he will join the team immediately during their Calder Cup playoff run, or if he will start at some later date, or next season.
There has been speculation for some time he would make this move. He declined to discuss details or plans as recently as last month, saying “I’m in contact with them. They’re really happy with how I’ve been playing. I see myself on the Toronto Marlies, hopefully next year.” It looks like that will now happen.
Piccinich attended Boston University for one year after being drafted. He then jumped to the OHL’s London Knights for the 2015-16 season, playing with Mitchell Marner on the team that eventually won the Memorial Cup.
This season, Piccinich was named team captain on a vote by the players. The Knights were ultimately eliminated by the Erie Otters in the playoffs earlier this month, but Piccinich stood as one of the offensive stars during the regular season, scoring 26 goals and earning 46 assists over 66 games.
Piccinich picked up one vote in our Top 25 Under 25 last summer, not enough to actually be ranked, but enough to keep him on the radar. The versatile forward now has a big opportunity to prove himself with the Marlies.