Photo Credit: WikiMedia Commons - JimmyK

Maple Leafs sign Finnish forward Miro Aaltonen to entry-level contract

According to the Maple Leafs’ official PR Twitter account, the team has signed 23-year-old centre/winger Miro Aaltonen to an entry-level deal.

Aaltonen, who was drafted by the Anaheim Ducks in the sixth round of the 2013 draft, is currently playing for Vityaz Podolsk of the KHL, where he has 19 goals and 25 assists through 59 games, good for third on the team. Before that, Aaltonen spent seasons with the Espoo Blues and Kärpät of the Finnish Elite League, and twice played for Finland’s U20 team the World Juniors.

According to scouts, Aaltonen is an excellent skater, is skilled and creative with the puck, and is a strong playmaker. He’s also been characterized as a player who plays a high energy game which helps compensate for being undersized.

This signing puts the Leafs at 31/50 contracts for the 2017-18 season, and, of course, since he’s on an entry-level deal, Aaltonen will not need to be protected in the upcoming expansion draft.

  • Gary Empey

    Miro Aaltonen
    Forward — shoots L
    Born Jun 7 1993 —
    [23 yrs. ago]
    Height 5.10 — Weight 169
    From Hockey Future’s
    Aaltonen is a high skill, undersized forward who plays with a high effort level to get the most out of his ability. Capable of playing either wing or center he is a solid puck-possession player with great distribution and creativity. Aaltonen’s puck handling and skating skills compare favorably with players in his age group. His size has been his biggest question mark and he will need add to bulk and strength to both stay healthy and compete successfully at the North American pro level on a nightly basis.

    • killerkash

      It’s a real good signing by the Leafs. He’ll undoubtedly spend next year with the Marlies or at least to start the season. I could see him being used as a left winger which is the thinnest forward position in the organization especially with the Leafs. He may be a suitable replacement for JVR and/or Komarov at next year’s trade deadline. Seth Griffith is another possibility. Kapanen and Liepsic are both righties.

    • Gary Empey

      I don’t believe Leaf management has overlooked the need to strengthen the defence. I seems no great opportunity came up at the trade deadline. It looks like we will have to wait for the end of the season/summer to see if we can get a better than average defender for fair market value. In the meantime management is injecting young depth at all positions into the system.

    • yes but this found money. we need a guy d-man who can step in and play ideally top 2/maybe top 4 minutes. nothing wrong with adding another forward prospect.

      if we have too many than we can trade them to gain assets in other areas like defence.