Leafs sign top Finnish prospects to matching entry-level contracts

May 13 2022, 3:49 pm

On Friday, the Toronto Maple Leafs locked in key pieces of their future, signing top Finnish prospects Roni Hirvonen and Topi Niemelä to entry-level contracts.

The team announced the signings Friday morning

Hirvonen, selected by Toronto in the second round (No. 59) of the 2020 NHL Draft, had 26 points (nine goals, 17 assists) in 46 games with HIFK of Liiga. He added six points (three goals, three assists) in five playoff games. The 20-year-old has 63 points (20 goals, 43 assists) in 152 games with HIFK and Assat. 

The 20-year-old was Finland’s captain at the 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship, which was postponed to August because of concerns over COVID-19. He won bronze at the 2021 World Juniors. 

Niemelä was picked by the Maple Leafs in the third round (No. 64) of the 2020 draft.

He had 32 points (10 goals, 22 assists) in 48 games with Karpat of Liiga, and one assist in six playoff games. He has 43 points (11 goals, 32 assists) in 106 career Liiga games. He was an assistant captain to Hirvonen at the 2022 World Juniors and won bronze alongside Hirvonen at the 2021 tournament.

Each contract has an average annual value of both contracts is $856,666.

Aaron VickersAaron Vickers

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