(Image Source: EA Sports)
Last season, the Toronto Maple Leafs’ incredibly talented young core helped to break the team into the playoffs. It was a short-lived run in the postseason, but one that was enough for the fanbase and management to crave even more this season. After adding John Tavares in the summer, many saw the Buds as the frontrunners to win it all in 2019, and while they’re not the strongest team in the Eastern Conference, the Maple Leafs will certainly be in the mix.
John Tavares, Center, 90 OVR
Age: 27Role: SniperHeight: 185cmWeight: 94kgShoots: LeftBest Stats: 94 Deking, Hand-Eye, Passing, Puck Control, Wrist Shot Accuracy
For many years, John Tavares carried the New York Islanders as far he possibly could while management failed to build, or maintain, a worthy team around him. Now with the Maple Leafs, Tavares is flourishing on a team that will contend in the playoffs for many years. Having scored 37 goals and 84 points last season, Tavares is set to put up even more points in this campaign with 30 goals and 54 points through 51 games. He’s one of the most lethal snipers in NHL 19, with 94s across all puck skills, 91 wrist shot power, 92 slap shot power, 93 slap shot accuracy, and 94 wrist shot accuracy.
Morgan Rielly, Defenseman, 86 OVR
Age: 24Role: Two-WayHeight: 185cmWeight: 98kgShoots: LeftBest Stats: 90 Deking, Passing, Puck Control, Discipline, Offensive Awareness, Acceleration, Agility, Speed
One of the go-to criticisms of the Toronto Maple Leafs to disband their championship hopes is often the team’s lack of high-quality defensemen. It’s said that Stanley Cup winners need to have an elite-level defenseman in their lines, such as John Carlson, Kris Letang, Duncan Keith, or Drew Doughty, so this season, Morgan Rielly has been trying to become that defenseman. His 52 points last season was good, but his -4 rating showed defensive frailties. This season, Rielly boasts a +24 rating through 51 games as well as 52 points. In NHL 19, he’s a very mobile skater and great at moving the puck with 90s across the speed attributes and most puck skills.
Frederik Andersen, Goaltender, 88 OVR
Age: 28Role: HybridHeight: 193cmWeight: 104kgShoots: LeftBest Stats: 91 Vision, Angles, Stick Low, Recover
The Toronto Maple Leafs were flying atop the NHL before starting goaltender Frederik Andersen picked up an injury. The Danish netminder has become crucial to the Buds, starting a massive 66 games last season but still maintaining a .918 save percentage. In the game, he’s also a very reliable goaltender, boasting ratings of 90 for breakaway and five-hole, but a susceptible 87 for stick high.
From the Day 1, September 13 update, this is how the Toronto Maple Leafs’ first lines start. Despite not having Mitchell Marner, Jake Gardiner, or John Tavares on the first line, the Buds host a very menacing top set. Whenever Auston Matthews is on the ice in NHL 19, you have a great chance of scoring a goal.
NHL 19 Toronto Maple Leafs Roster
Patrick Marleau (82) – Auston Matthews (89) – William Nylander (85)Morgan Rielly (86) – Ron Hainsey (80)Frederik Andersen (88)
|Name||Overall Rating||Position/Role||Height||Age||Shoots||Best Stats|
|Auston Matthews||89||Playmaker Center||191cm||20||Left||92 Offensive Awareness, Passing, Puck Control, Deking|
|Mitchell Marner||86||Right Wing Playmaker||183cm||21||Right||92 Agility, Offensive Awareness, Puck Control, Deking|
|William Nylander||85||Right Wing Playmaker||183cm||22||Right||92 Agility. 91 Offensive Awareness, Deking, Passing, Puck Control|
|Nazem Kadri||85||Two-Way Center||183cm||27||Left||89 Aggressiveness. 88 Slap Shot Accuracy, Slap Shot Power, Wrist Shot Accuracy, Offensive Awareness, Acceleration, Agility, Speed, Deking, Puck Control|
|Jake Gardiner||83||Two-Way Defenseman||188cm||28||Left||88 Passing, Puck Control, Stick Checking, Offensive Awareness, Acceleration, Agility, Speed, Slap Shot Power, Wrist Shot Power|
|Patrick Marleau||82||Left Wing Sniper||188cm||39||Left||90 Discipline. 89 Balance. 88 Speed, Strength, Slap Shot Power|
|Nikita Zaitsev||82||Two-Way Defenseman||188cm||26||Right||87 Slap Shot Power, Strength, Balance, Shot Blocking, Defensive Awareness|
|Zach Hyman||81||Two-Way Right Wing||185cm||26||Right||87 Stick Checking, Balance, Slap Shot Power, Aggressiveness, Body Checking, Strength|
|Ron Hainsey||80||Defensive Defenseman||191cm||37||Left||90 Discipline. 87 Stick Checking, Slap Shot Power|
|Connor Brown||80||Two-Way Right Wing||183cm||24||Right||95 Discipline. 87 Deking, Acceleration, Agility, Speed|
|*Connor Carrick||80||Two-Way Defenseman||178cm||24||Right||87 Shot Blocking, Stick Checking, Acceleration, Agility, Speed|
|Travis Dermott||79||Two-Way Defenseman||180cm||21||Left||88 Speed, Acceleration. 87 Agility, Slap Shot Power|
|Andreas Johnsson||78||Left Wing Sniper||178cm||23||Left||88 Deking. 87 Agility, Speed, Acceleration|
|Kasperi Kapanen||78||Two-Way Right Wing||180cm||22||Right||90 Acceleration, Speed, Discipline|
|Tyler Ennis||78||Right Wing Sniper||175cm||28||Left||90 Discipline, Deking. 89 Acceleration, Agility|
|Josh Jooris||76||Two-Way Right Wing||185cm||28||Right||87 Discipline. 85 Acceleration, Agility, Balance, Speed, Slap Shot Power, Wrist Shot Power, Strength|
|*Josh Leivo||75||Two-Way Right Wing||188cm||25||Right||86 Slap Shot Power, Wrist Shot Power, Strength|
|Nathan Horton||70||Right Wing Power Forward||188cm||33||Right||87 Balance, Aggressiveness. 86 Stick Checking|
|Curtis McElhinney||79||Hybrid Goaltender||188cm||35||Left||85 Puck Playing Frequency, Agility, Speed|
*Connor Carrick traded to the Dallas Stars on October 1.*Josh Leivo traded to the Vancouver Canucks on December 3.
Timothy Liljegren, Defenseman, 75 OVR
Age: 19Role: Two-WayHeight: 180cmWeight: 90kgShoots: 19Potential: Elite med
The Toronto Maple Leafs are looking to Timothy Liljegren to plug holes in their defense in the coming years, even with the traded-in Jake Muzzin on the team. If you’re willing to give him top-six minutes, Liljegren can quickly develop into one of the team’s best defensemen.
It appears as though the Maple Leafs know about their frailties on the blueline and are hoping that at least one of their many defensive prospects come up big for them down the line. Rasmus Sandin has the makings of a great blueliner, but Eemeli Rasanen could make for a solid third-line defenseman once his overall rating grows to top 75.
NHL 19 Toronto Maple Leafs Top Prospects
|Semyon Der-Arguchintsev||56||Playmaker Center||175cm||18||Right||Top 6 med|
|Filip Kral||57||Two-Way Defenseman||180cm||18||Left||Top 6 med|
|Rasmus Sandin||58||Two-Way Defenseman||180cm||18||Left||Top 4 med|
|Riley Stotts||58||Two-Way Center||183cm||18||Left||Top 9 med|
|Ryan McGregor||57||Two-Way Center||183cm||19||Left||AHL Top 6 med|
|Pontus Holmberg||57||Two-Way Right Wing||175cm||19||Left||Bottom 6 med|
|Mac Hollowell||58||Offensive Defenseman||178cm||19||Right||7th D med|
|*Sean Durzi||61||Offensive Defenseman||180cm||19||Right||Top 6 med|
|Fedor Gordeev||61||Defensive Defenseman||196cm||19||Left||AHL Top 2 high|
|Eemeli Rasanen||63||Two-Way Defenseman||198cm||19||Right||Top 6 med|
|*Carl Grundstrom||70||Two-Way Left Wing||183cm||20||Left||Top 6 med|
|Jesper Lindgren||63||Offensive Defenseman||183cm||21||Right||7th D med|
|Dmytro Timashov||71||Left Wing Playmaker||178cm||21||Left||Top 6 low|
|*Andrew Nielsen||74||Two-Way Defenseman||191cm||21||Left||Top 6 med|
|Eamon McAdam||64||Hybrid Goaltender||191cm||23||Left||AHL Starter med|
|Ian Scott||60||Hybrid Goaltender||191cm||19||Left||Backup med|
|Zachary Bouthillier||55||Hybrid Goaltender||188cm||18||Left||AHL Starter med|
*Andrew Nielsen traded to the Calgary Flames on November 27.*Carl Grundstrom traded to the Los Angeles Kings on January 28.*Sean Durzi traded to the Los Angeles Kings on January 28.