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Top 40 Prospects - #10, Leafs vs. Sharks; New Leafs Convo

October 22, 2021, 12:34 PM ET [782 Comments]
Mike Augello
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The Toronto Maple Leafs organization has drafted and developed a number of youngsters currently playing in the NHL like Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, William Nylander, Pierre Engvall, Travis Dermott and Justin Holl, but the next step for the club under GM Kyle Dubas is to keep replenishing the prospect pool to provide the Leafs with youngsters who can step up and replace veterans who retire, depart via free agency or are traded.

As we did last year, we will rank the club’s top prospects over the next few weeks based on their progress in either the NCAA, CHL, Europe, ECHL or AHL and their potential to make the Leafs roster and make a contribution in the future.

Players are eligible for the list if they have not played more than 40 NHL games:

#40 - Jeremy McKenna – RW (Wichita – ECHL, Toronto – AHL)
#39 – Ryan Tverberg – C (Connecticut – NCAA)
#38 – Ryan O’Connell – D (Ohio State – NCAA)
#37 - Semyon Kizimov – RW (Lada Togliatti – VHL / Torpedo – KHL)
#36 - Wyatt Schingoethe – C (Waterloo – USHL)
#35 - Kalle Loponen – D (Karpat – Finland SM-Liiga)
#34 - Vladislav Kara – LW (Cherepovets Severstal/Moscow Spartak – KHL)
#33 - Kirill Semyonov – C (Avangard Omsk – KHL)
#32 - William Villeneuve – D (Saint John – QMJHL)
#31 - Ty Voit – LW (Sarnia – OHL)
#30 – Joe Miller – C(Chicago – USHL
#29 - Brennan Menell – D (Minsk Dynamo – KHL)
#28 - John Fusco – D (Harvard – NCAA)
#27 - Axel Rindell – D (Jukurit – Finland SM-Liiga)
#26 - Noel Hoefenmayer – D (Toronto - AHL)
#25 - Alex Steeves – C (Notre Dame – NCAA)
#24 - Teemu Kivihalme - D (Toronto - AHL)
#23 - Kristians Rubins - D (Toronto - AHL / Frederikshavn - Denmark)
#22 - Ian Scott – G (Toronto - AHL)
#21 – Veeti Miettinen – RW (St. Cloud St. – NCAA)

#20 – Artur Akhtyamov – G (Ak Bars Kazan – MHL/VHL/KHL)
#19 – Filip Kral - D (Kometa Brno – Czech, Toronto - AHL)
#18 - Joseph Duszak - D (Toronto - AHL)
#17 – Mac Hollowell - D (Toronto – AHL / TuTo Turku – Finland Mestis)
#16 – Semyon Der-Argushintsev - C (Torpedo – KHL, Toronto - AHL)
#15 – Pavel Gogolev – LW (Vasby IK – Swe-1, Toronto – AHL)
#14 - Pontus Holmberg – LW (Vaxjo HC – SHL)
#13 – Mikko Kokkonen – D (Jukurit Mikkeli – Finland SM-Liiga, Toronto - AHL)
#12 – Joseph Woll – G (Toronto – AHL)
#11 - Dmitry Ovchinnikov – F (Sibir Novosibirsk – MHL/KHL)

#10 - Mikhail Abramov – C (Victoriaville – QMJHL)

The Toronto Maple Leafs draft philosophy under Kyle Dubas of focusing on high-level skill, skating ability and hockey IQ and with less emphasis on size and physicality showed in his first draft as GM in 2018 and continued at the 2019 NHL Draft in Vancouver. After selecting winger Nick Robertson in the second round, Toronto selected center Mikhail Abramov in the fourth round.

Abramov was selected 115th overall after a solid debut season with the QMJHL’s Victoriaville Tigers. The Moscow native spent his developmental years in the CSKA Moscow system before heading to North America in 2018.

The center scored 54 points (16 goals, 38 assists) in 62 games and finished third in points on the Tigers, and averaged nearly a point-per-game (1 goal, 6 assists) in 8 games during the QMJHL Playoffs. The 6’0” 185 lb. center more than doubled his goal total in 2019-20 and led Victoriaville in scoring with 76 points (35 goals, 41 assists) and was signed to an entry-level deal by Toronto in March, 2020.

The Q unlike the OHL and WHL played a partial season in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Leafs prospect continued to show progress, scoring 30 points (12 goals, 18 assists) in 25 games and played for Russia for the 2021 World Juniors in Edmonton, registering two assists in four games.

Relying mostly on his skating ability and edge work to create offensive chances, Abramov is an excellent playmaker with good vision and possesses a good shot. Similar to the model that the Leafs have followed with many of their forward prospects, the club will likely bring the talented Russian along slowly in the American Hockey League to develop him properly.


After three day off, the Leafs get back into action against the San Jose Sharks at Scotiabank Arena. The game is an unusual 6pm start because of Toronto traveling for the first time south of the border to Pittsburgh on Saturday and expected delays at US Customs.

The Sharks remained undefeated with a 2-1 victory against Ottawa on Thursday with former Leaf James Reimer in goal. Adin Hill will start for San Jose in the second of back-to-back games, while Michael Hutchinson will make his first start of the year for Toronto.


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