Michael Paliotta is a very good example of a player who was drafted in the third round, and fulfilled the usual outcome for picks that late: He’s not quite an NHL player.  He is a good AHL defenceman though, and even better, he shoots right.

The right-handed depth at defence on the Marlies last year was very bad.  The standard set-up was some left-hander playing on the right side, often on two pairs.  This year, the organization is taking steps to right that wrong.

The lop of the list is new NHL-contracted AHL player Vincent LoVerde.  Next is Marlies stalwart Justin Holl, who was resigned to an NHL deal for another year.

Now we add Paliotta on an AHL contract. He is a college player of good skill, and has scored a good amount in two seasons in the AHL.  He’s only 24, and should be a great addition to the team.

The only drawback from a fan’s point of view, is that Paliotta is another name that comes between Timothy Liljegren and an AHL season.

Just the fact that the Leafs are now loading the Marlies with more than enough top-quality players instead of barely enough players who can contribute is a sign the organization is digging in for a long-term commitment to developing players at all levels.

Welcome to the Marlies, Michael Paliotta.

Michael Paliotta via Elite Prospects

2007-2008Choate Rosemary HallUSHS-----
2008-2009Choate Rosemary HallUSHS2411415-
2009-2010USNTDP JuniorsUSHL3216743
U.S. National U17 TeamUSDP502121453
USA U17WHC-1760224
2010-2011USNTDP JuniorsUSHL2405535
U.S. National U18 TeamUSDP601141577
USA U18WJC-1860112
2011-2012Univ. of VermontNCAA30461044
2012-2013Univ. of VermontNCAA35191050
2013-2014Univ. of VermontNCAA385222751
2014-2015Univ. of VermontNCAA419273640
Chicago BlackhawksNHL10110
2015-2016Columbus Blue JacketsNHL10004
Cleveland MonstersAHL688152329Playoffs80000
2016-2017Hartford Wolf PackAHL521131420