No one is happier about being wrong than me right now. With my suggestion that Mike Zigomanis was moving on after the signing of Keith Aucoin, I was really happy to see Ziggy accept an AHL contract recently (this is not a two way contract with the Maple Leafs meaning he will not be considered for call-ups) and continue his role as a seasoned mentor on the Marlies squad. It expressed sincere dedication on his part and that he was staying true to his statement that he would accept whatever role the Leafs had for him that would allow him to stay in Toronto, very classy move by him.
Not only does there seem to be some key vetern presence in the room now with Aucoin, Ziggy and to a certain extent Yeo and Kostka, you have to wonder if the team is being bolstered for another run at the Calder Cup! Here’s hoping!
This is more of a question than a statement but does anyone remember whether Denny Urban is still affiliated with the Maple Leafs organization? The 5’7″, 170lbs undrafted defenseman from Robert Morris University attended Marlies camp last year and was later assigned to the Reading Royals of the ECHL where he was named Royals Rookie of the Year, playing all 72 games (including 5 playoff games where he recorded 1g and 1a) potting 12 goals with 35 helpers and posting a +15 (second highest in team history). He recently signed with the Reading Royals as indicated in the following press release:
p.s. has anyone heard any rumblings on if the Maple Leafs will affiliate themselves with another ECHL team this year?
Really hope that he is invited to camp as he would be a welcome offensive defenseman that may add an interesting dynamic to our rearguard although looking at the roster it remains to be seen if there is even room. The below is a rough outline of next years group assuming Holzer, Kadri and Frattin all make the Leafs out of camp and Reilly and Finn are sent back to junior for one more year.
Ryan Hamilton Mike Zigomanis Carter Ashton
Nicolas Deschamps Keith Aucoin Spencer Abbott
Jerry D’Amigo Joe Colborne Tyler Brenner
Will Acton Matt Caruana Greg Scott
*spare Kenny Ryan(?), David Broll(?)
Mark Fraser – Mike Kostka
Mike Yeo – Jessie Blacker
Simon Gysbers – Stuart Percy
*spare Josh Engel
Not a bad team if I do say myself. Like any team there are some question marks especially if you start comparing it to one that just made the Calder Cup the previous year. With the loss of Frattin and Kadri will the forward corps be able to keep up the scoring pace? and although I have slotted him as the starting goalie, Ben Scrivens still may be dealt in any negotiation the Maple Leafs have that brings in another goalie which does leave the tandem of Rynnas and Owuya with something to prove this year.
Food for thought!