The Toronto Maple Leafs have claimed 23-year-old winger Seth Griffith off of waivers.
The former fifth-round draft pick in 2012 put up 77 points in 57 games for the Providence Bruins last season to lead all AHL players in points per game (and finish second in overall points). He appeared in just four NHL games last season, recording a single assist.
Seth Griffith was a part-time NHLer in 2014-15 (30 games), notching 10 points and a 49.5% CF while playing 13:26 a night, including 1:45 on the powerplay. He saw significant time next to Milan Lucic and David Krejci when he was in the Bruins lineup (253 5v5 minutes with Lucic, 161 minutes with Krejci).
5’9 and 192 pounds, Griffith is described as offensively talented with above-average hockey sense and a good work ethic, but The Forecaster‘s scouting report suggests he is held back at the NHL level by his size and “somewhat mediocre” skating ability. A London Knight for his four-year junior career, Mark Hunter had significant input into this pickup:
Babcock says he doesn't know much about Seth Griffith but that Hunter vouched for him.
— James Mirtle (@mirtle) October 11, 2016
Seth Griffith Scouting Report (Forecaster)
|Resilient, he can produce abundant offense at lower levels thanks to above-average hockey sense. Is also competent defensively. Works hard to improve his game.|
|Is undersized for the wing positions in the National Hockey League. Also, his skating is somewhat mediocre for the highest level. Isn’t an overly physical player, either.|
|Depth scoring winger with a little upside.|
Where does Seth Griffith fit?
The Leafs may prefer to get Griffith into some practices first to familiarize him with the systems before he sees any game action — something we’ve seen them do before with a waiver add when Frank Corrado was claimed last Fall. He’ll likely need to prove himself to Mike Babcock in practice before he breaks into his lineup.
Where he fits in the Leafs lineup when he does play isn’t clear. It will in large part depend on Babcock’s assessment of his 200-foot game. He is a right-handed shot, which means he could potentially plug in next to Nazem Kadri and Leo Komarov — he has played up the lineup in Boston when he saw time with Lucic and Krejci. Kadri and Komarov will be receiving the tough even-strength assignments on home ice, so he would have to be responsible enough defensively to play there. The other, and seemingly more likely, option is placing him on a line with Peter Holland and Matt Martin; he would technically be on the team’s fourth line, but Holland would give him some skill to play with.
To make space for Griffith’s arrival on the 23-man roster, Brooks Laich has been assigned to the Toronto Marlies while Josh Leivo has been placed on IR retroactive October 6th.
Griffith will make $625,000 in 2016-17 and will be an RFA at season’s end.
Seth Griffith Video
Seth Griffith Statistics
|2008-09||Chatham-Kent Cyclones M Mdgt AAA||AHMMPL||52||42||45||87||112|||||Playoffs||8||7||6||13||36|
|Chatham Jr. Maroons||GOJHL||1||0||0||0||0||||
|2009-10||St. Marys Lincolns||GOJHL||49||43||35||78||56|||||Playoffs||5||6||3||9||4|
|2012-13||London Knights A||OHL||54||33||48||81||52||18|||||Playoffs||21||9||16||25||14||5|