Some quick news and notes for your Monday afternoon:
– The Maple Leafs announced over the weekend that forward prospect Mikhail Stefanovich has been loaned to Minsk Dynamo of the KHL. There is no word yet on the anticipated timetable on a potential return to North America. The 21 year old Stefanovich was touted by as a dynamic, scoring forward after being drafted 98th overall in the 2008 NHL Draft by the Maple Leafs, but has struggled with inconsistency over the past couple seasons. Mikhail’s development should benefit from playing against higher level competition and returning to a familiar environment.
– Forward prospect Bradley Ross has been invited to the December Camp roster for the 2011 Canadian World Junior team. The Leafs‘ top selection, 43rd overall in the 2010 NHL draft, has 10 goals and 13 assists through 26 games played this season for the Portland Winterhawks of the WHL. Ross will likely be leaned upon for a grinding, agitating third line role for the Canadians, much like Steve Downie was a couple years ago.
– The Leafs’ other highly touted forward prospect, Greg McKegg, was unfortunately left off the invite list for the December Camp. The Erie Otters captain has been destroying the OHL to the tune of 20 goals and 20 assists through 28 games played, good for 5th overall in league scoring. McKegg earned his second OHL Player of the Week honours earlier this morning, after a week in which he tallied 6 goals, 3 assists and a +5 rating in 3 games played.
– It looks as if Nazem Kadri will be stepping even moreso into the limelight as the youngster has been centering the team’s top line in practice ahead of Tuesday night’s matchup against the Lightning. Kadri will be flanked by Clarke MacArthur and Phil Kessel in an effort to generate some much needed offense. Luca Caputi will be inserted back into the lineup and placed alongside Mikhail Grabovski and Nikolai Kulemin on the team’s second line while the struggling Tyler Bozak will be bumped down to third line duties.