A Toronto Maple Leafs prospect received some unfortunate news this weekend, as a broken arm will almost guaranteed keep him out of the rest of this season in the junior hockey ranks.
Ryan O'Connell, a left-shot defenseman selected 203rd overall in the 2017 NHL Draft will miss the rest of the season, according to Penticton Vees head coach and general manager Fred Harbinson.
O'Connell had 14 points in 25 games on the blueline in his rookie season in the BCHL.
O'Connell has a long way before being considered for a position in the Leafs' organization - he is committed to Boston University next year, although the Mississauga Steelheads retain his OHL rights should he decide to take the Canadian Hockey League route.
His status as a late 7th round pick should not make anyone dismiss his potential as a future Leaf, as any player picked in the draft has some potential that scouts picked up on. The Leafs' scouting staff has been more than adept in recent years at finding valuable prospects through the draft, and O'Connell could easily be one of them down the road.
His progress will be stunted, however, as he will have to rehabilitate from this season-ending injury.
OTHER LEAFS PROSPECT NEWS
J.D. Greenway, a 3rd round selection by Toronto in 2016, missed half the season due to personal reasons, but has finally made his return to game action, playing his two first games for the University of Wisconsin this season.
Ryan McGregor had one of his best games of the season for the Sarnia Sting this past week, scoring 2 goals, totalling 3 goals and 4 points on the week. The centreman was selected in the 6th round in 2017.
Nolan Vesey, brother of New York Rangers' forward Jimmy Vesey, had one of his best weeks in years, scoring 3 goals and 3 assists for the University of Maine. He was drafted back in 2014, 158th overall.