Leafs sign Finnish centre Kontiola to 1-year deal

Tim and Sid hear the news of the Maple Leafs signing Mike Santorelli, not to mention an import from the KHL. Does this solve all of the Leafs' problems? (Probably not.)

The Toronto Maple Leafs are looking overseas to bolster their depth at centre.

Sportsnet has learned that the team has signed free agent Petri Kontiola to a one-year contract.

Kontiola is a former seventh-round draft pick of the Chicago Blackhawks and spent the last five seasons playing in the Russian-based league. The 29-year-old Finn also won a bronze medal while representing his country at the Sochi Olympics and earned a silver at the IIHF World Hockey Championship in May.

Known primarily as a playmaking centre, he amassed 112 assists and 175 points in 258 regular-season KHL games for Traktor and Metallurg Magnitogorsk.

In 12 NHL games with the Blackhawks during the 2007-08 season, Kontiola had five assists.

The player is believed to have paid in the neighbourhood of $600,000 from his own pocket to terminate the contract with Chelyabinsk and pursue a move to North America.

Kontiola is the second player the Leafs have brought over this week. Leo Komarov, another Finn who played in the KHL last season, signed an $11.8-million, four-year deal with Toronto on Tuesday.

Where exactly Kontiola fits among Toronto’s group of centres is unclear. He joins Nazem Kadri, Tyler Bozak and Peter Holland on the NHL roster.

July 3, 2014


Petri Kontiola
1 Year
Free Agency
$1.1 million
$1.1 million