Andreas Johnsson was the MVP of the AHL Calder Cup Playoffs last season, but he still faces the prospect of fighting at training camp for a spot on the Maple Leaf’s fourth line for this coming season.

Johnsson moves up three spots in our rankings this season. First, let me tell you that he is very fit, consistent with a lot of the “Dubas Marlies” guys; they aren’t tall, but are inconspicuously very muscular and built for rough and tumble hockey underneath all that gear.

After nearly two whole seasons on the Toronto Marlies, the seventh round pick from the 2013 NHL Draft finally made the jump to his NHL with his debut with the Maple Leafs last season. We have gone over some of his early struggles in North America before, questioning in last year’s ranking if we were actually seeing the real Johnsson, or one hobbled by bad-luck, a possible concussion, and some continued difficulty adjusting to the North American game.

He obviously convinced our voters with his performance this season that he is ready to make the move up to the NHL level, at least to have the opportunity to try and prove himself.

He has quite a few fans in the Leafs organisation too.

Marlies captain-in-waiting Colin Greening said at the post-season presser that he was a big fan of Johnsson, noting he always seemed to step up for the Marlies with a perfect pass at the perfect moment in their big games.

I think that’s becoming a part of his m.o. I even remember last year he had that knack for when the game was tied, or when we were down, to—not necessarily score—but be a key contributor to start the play; break the puck out of the zone or be the one who passes it.
- Colin Greening

Indeed, on the Marlies this season Johnsson had 28 assists in 54 games, in addition to his 26 goals, giving an exact point per game total. He added another incredible 10 goals and 14 assists in the 16 games he played on the way to winning the Calder Cup with the Marlies.

Oh yeah. Johnsson can score those big goals that make the highlight reels.

Johnsson made his NHL debut this season and impressed there too, scoring two goals in nine games. He proved he can also score in those moments where the Leafs are in the process of humiliating the Habs, which is totally a great bonus.

So Johnsson is great, right?

The question everyone is now asking is where does Johnsson fit in the Maple Leafs lines out of training camp? Our whole staff ranked him in the top 10 of Maple Leafs Prospects under 25 years old, the first on our list to acheive that this season. So he’s got to make his way permanently in to the Leafs lineup this season, right?

There’s one little issue. Or, more like two or three.

Johnsson now finds himself in a messy race to join the third or fourth line of Maple Leafs wingers, competing against both Josh Leivo, and Tyler Ennis.

Did you even remember Tyler Ennis is now in the Leafs system?

Toronto Maple Leafs Sign Tyler Ennis for One Year, $650,000

Ennis has most recently played the same position, though he was at center in the past. All of the fourth line forward positions will be fiercely contested at training camp, and it’s certain Johnsson wants to win a spot at this point in his career.

Our staff bantered about this and there were some comments about how this may shake out.

People will be annoyed Ennis is a) playing, and b) playing above Johnsson.
- Arvind

This reminds of how we projected Dermott would not make the Leafs out of last year’s training camp and “people will be shocked,” but that is exactly what happened.

I figure the fourth line is going to play not very much and I would prefer to use Johnsson and Kappy more. But it’s not a huge deal. Ennis is potentially good. I mostly just don’t love Connor Brown.
- Fulemin

Fulemin is trying to destroy Connor Brown’s hockey career! Johnsson still has at least one fan on our staff expecting big things from him this season.

It will be impressive to have Johnsson win the Calder on the 4th line - Brigstew

He’s also a Bond villain in his spare time, which, how can you not like that?

(scene: Johnsson and Leivo are playing Black Jack in a smoky dimly lit room. Johnsson has 20. Leivo then goes bust when he hits on 19 and the dealer puts down a 3.)
JOHNSSON: “What a pity Mr. Leivo. Looks like you’ll be in the press box again this season.”
(Johnsson snaps his fingers and his hired goons grab Leivo)
LEIVO: “Wait! At least tell me your secret plan for hockey world domination!”
JOHNSSON: “Oh I won’t be making that mistake again.”
(maniacal laughter as Leivo is dragged away)