Tough-guy David Broll will be back in the American Hockey League this year, as according to James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail, the former Maple Leafs draft pick will sign a minor-league deal with the Montreal Canadiens to skate with the St. John’s IceCaps this season (their last, before moving to Laval in 2017-18).
Broll was originally selected by the Maple Leafs in the sixth round of the 2011 Entry Draft, as a gritty winger who could hopefully develop into at least a penalty killing presence at a professional level. While he’s never developed much of a scoring touch, he did enough to earn a five game call-up in 2013-14 for the Maple Leafs, where he recorded one assist.
One of the suspected victims of the AHL’s new fighting restrictions, Broll will need to keep his gloves on his hands this year; he’s had double digit fighting majors in each of his three professional seasons. The league now will suspend players who record more than three fighting majors in a single season, a strong step towards ridding the league of fighting almost entirely. Broll will clearly need to contribute in other ways to stay relevant in hockey.