Leafs Sign Carter Verhaeghe


The Toronto Maple Leafs have announced the signing of 18 year old Carter Verhaeghe to a three year entry level deal. He’ll report to the Toronto Marlies of the American Hockey League effective immediately.

Who Is He?

Verhagehe was drafted by the Maple Leafs in the third round (82nd overall) in last year’s NHL Entry Draft. He built a reputation before draft day as a two way forward, but has made vast strides offensively this year, scoring 28 goals and 54 assists in 65 games, first on the Niagara IceDogs. He went from being unranked in our pre-season prospect list, to 11th in the midterm charts. For more information, check out Justin Fisher’s post from Draft Day.

Where Does He Slot In?

Unfortunately for him, the Marlies have a lot of forwards, and they’re basically all healthy at the moment, particularly down the middle. He’ll be competing with Peter Holland, Trevor Smith, Greg McKegg, Sam Carrick, and Jarred Smithson for minutes. Thankfully for him, Steve Spott is preaching the benefits of rotation and making everybody feel like they’re “part of the team”, and the Marlies could have as many as nine games with a clinched playoff spot and more room to experiment.

    • DeSpy

      I don’t think he can play for the Marlies until he is 20 years old (unless his season is over in the OHL), so he’ll most likely return to juniors next year. If he is called up, it would be directly to the Leafs, like with Rielly. I think that’s how it works, don’t know why though.

      • Verhaeghe will return to Niagara next season. He’s not eligible for full time AHL duty until he’s 20 years old. This is a CHL-NHL agreement that is designed to not rush youngsters to the pros (specifically the AHL) and also keep CHL stars with their franchises a little longer. It helps CHL franchises avoid the one and done” issue that NCAA basketball programs sometimes face.

        Because Niagara’s season is over, he is eligible to join the Marlies on an ATO (Amateur Try Out Contract). That three year entry level contract actually doesn’t kick in until next season.

        Hopefully that clears things up.