Johan Svensson of Expressen in Sweden is reporting that free agent defender Calle Rosen has made his decision and will sign with the Toronto Maple Leafs after the World Championships. The 23-year old played this season for the Vaxjo Lakers, scoring 19 points in 41 games. There is no guarantee that he’ll make the Swedish roster at Worlds, though he is there practicing with them. The tournament begins on May 5th.
If the new report is accurate, Rosen would represent another free agent addition for the Maple Leafs from abroad, after they signed Nikita Zaitsev and immediately pushed him into their lineup this season. While Rosen doesn’t have the sort of experience or expected potential Zaitsev possessed, he does represent an NHL level talent that had been overlooked by the rest of the league in the past.
- On Wednesday, David Alter and Scott Powers of The Athletic teamed up to bring us the report that Chicago and Toronto were the front-runners for Rosen’s services. The pair spoke to a former coach in Klas Oten, who told them “He’s had great development the last two seasons. He’s a good skater, likes to join the rush. He has a great shot. He’s an explosive player. He’s tall and thin and needs to improve his defense and get stronger. He’s also a great person.” If the Hawks—or any other team for that matter—are still in the running, they likely hope that Rosen could step into a third-pairing role right away and contribute. For Chicago in particular, both Johnny Oduya and Brian Campbell are set to hit the open market, giving them a clear need on the back end.