The Toronto Maple Leafs signed Topi Niemelä and Roni Hirvonen to future three-year entry-level contracts. The average annual value of both deals is $856,666.
The Toronto Maple Leafs signed 20-year-old prospects Topi Niemelä and Roni Hirvonen to future three-year entry-level contracts, the team announced Friday. The average annual value of both deals is $856,666.
Niemelä, a defenseman, was listed as the team's No. 3 prospect in The Athletic's January rankings. He put up 32 points (10 goals, 22 assists) in 48 games with Kärpät of the Finnish Elite League during the 2021-22 season. He led the team's defensemen in goals and points this season and has recorded 43 points through 106 career Liiga games with Kärpät. He also has three assists in 10 playoff games.
Toronto selected Niemelä at No. 64 overall in the 2020 NHL draft.
Hirvonen, a forward, was No. 6 in the team's latest prospect rankings. He had 26 points (nine goals, 17 assists) in 46 games with HIFK of the Finnish Elite League last season, adding six points in five playoff games. He put up 63 points in 152 career Liiga games across his time with HIFK and Ässät.
The Leafs picked Hirvonen at No. 59 overall in the 2020 draft.
Both prospects have represented Finland internationally on multiple occasions, including at the 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship before it was postponed and Finland's bronze medal run at the 2021 world juniors.
Maple Leafs sign Topi Niemelä, Roni Hirvonen to future entry-level contracts - The Athletic View Story