With only three games left on the schedule for the Toronto Marlies before the season’s conclusion, the hockey club got busy on Saturday, as they look to wrap up while keeping their win streak intact.
Hours after an overtime victory, in which the Marlies beat Laval 3-2, the team signed defenseman William Villeneuve to an amateur tryout, his first professional hockey contract. Villeneuve spent the 2020-21 season with the Saint John Sea Dogs in the QMJHL.
Playing his third season of major junior, the 19-year-old recorded 20 points, having scored three goals along with 17 assists. He did so as alternate captain, a leading role he was appointed to the season prior.
Hailing from Sherbrooke, Quebec, the righty, through his tenure with the Sea Dogs, has tallied 14 goals, amassing 103 points. This includes one appearance in the playoffs, which saw him rack up six points on one goal and five assists.
In 2019-20, the six-foot-one French-Canadian played in 64 games, amassing 58 points. As he tallied nine goals and 49 assists, both totals made for the most by a QMJHL defenseman. As well, the 2002 birthday was named by the league to the Second All-Star Team.
Following Villeneuve’s career-best season, he was chosen by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the draft’s fourth round, 122nd overall. While he’s yet to sign an entry-level contract, it’s expected that the 20th ranked prospect will return to New Brunswick for his fourth and final season.
Villeneuve has also competed with the National Team, playing with Canada Red U17 in 2018-19. Described as an agile defenseman, Villeneuve will get the opportunity to play pro on home ice in the series finale. Speaking of which, the Marlies hit the Bell Centre ice for the last time this season on Monday night.
As the rivals meet for one last time, Toronto drops the puck against the Rocket in the last of five games at 7:00pmET. Doing so in downtown Montreal, the game will be available for viewing on Leafs Nation Network and AHLTV. It can also be heard via radio on 91.9 Sports and TSN Radio 690 Montreal.