Toronto Maple Leafs: Observations from the final scrimmage game

TORONTO, ON - APRIL 19: Frederik Andersen
TORONTO, ON - APRIL 19: Frederik Andersen /

The Toronto Maple Leafs rookie development camp comes to an end with the camp invites defeating the prospects again 6-5.

The Toronto Maple Leafs prospects and camp invites played their final scrimmage game Wednesday at the MasterCard Centre. This also marked the final day of the rookie development camp. There were some changes to the invites line-up, but the prospects’ lines pretty much stayed the same.

Despite the invites winning Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s game, GM Lou Lamoriello wasn’t concerned saying:

"I don’t think you read into that at all. Look at both lineups, I think they were fairly even, quite frankly, as far as forwards go."

Thoughts and Observations

  • Team Sittler came out strong again which started with that top-line of PospisilRueschhoffTortora. Similarly to game one, Taro Hirose opened the scoring for the team. The scoring for the invites kept on going as goals from Sami Tarvenier, Logan DeNoble, and Cole Coskey put the team up 4-0 in the second period.
  • J.J. Piccinich and Adam Brooks continued to show what they have to offer for the Toronto Marlies this upcoming season. Brooks set up both Piccinich’s and Keaton Middleton’s goals in the second period. His defensive game has also improved as he was more responsible when the puck was in his own end. Brooks will be entering one of the most important summers of his hockey career as he looks to make the jump to the pros. Watching his willingness to take care of both sides of the ice is a positive sign in his development.
  • Tortora may have finished the camp as the most impressive invitee. The sequence of goals to put Team Sittler up 5-3 made him a standout. He grabbed the puck from the defensive zone and faked out Eemeli Rasanen to the point where he ran into the boards, then rings the puck off the post and into the net for the goal. He has speed, hockey sense, and a great shot. Whether he impressed Leafs management enough is still the question but, seven goals in three games is a fine stat.
  • Goalie prospect Ian Scott had a much better game for Team Clark. Especially in the beginning of the game when the Sittler top line was flying around the ice. With that being said, there were still some goals you would like for him not to give up. In particular, the DeNoble goal that beat him short side. Toronto native Mathew Robson was in net for portion of the game for Team Sittler. Despite letting in a few bad goals, he also made some great saves for the team.
  • Last but not least, Timothy Liljegren. The 2017 first round pick had another great outing for Team Clark. He was very steady and was making a lot of crisp passes to his teammates. Additionally, he stayed away from making the risky move in an attempt to make a statement on the last day of camp. He also found his way in the goal column with 15 seconds left in the game. It was something that will make all Leafs fans even more excited as the 18-year-old received the puck and walked the line and scored with his head up the whole time. Hopefully Liljegren does more of that in a full Leafs sweater down the road.

Next: Leafs still deciding where Liljegren will play

What did you make of the final scrimmage game? What did you make of the development camp as a whole? Do you expect to see any of the invites in the organization again? Let us know what you think in the comment section below!