Connor Brown (ice hockey)

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Connor Brown
Connor Brown.jpg
Born (1994-01-14) January 14, 1994 (age 23)
Etobicoke, Ontario, Canada
Height 6 ft 0 in (183 cm)
Weight 185 lb (84 kg; 13 st 3 lb)
Position Right Wing
Shoots Right
NHL team Toronto Maple Leafs
NHL Draft 156th overall, 2012
Toronto Maple Leafs
Playing career 2014–present

Connor Brown (born January 14, 1994) is a Canadian ice hockey right winger currently playing with the Toronto Maple Leafs of the National Hockey League (NHL). Brown was selected by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the sixth round (156th overall) of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.

Playing career[edit]

Amateur[edit]

Brown grew up playing youth hockey in the Toronto area. He played first for the West Mall Lightning mite select team, in the North York Hockey League, where his father was the head coach.[1] The Lightning team later morphed in the GTHL Toronto Marlboros team for 1994 born players. The core of the team won ten straight city championships and included seven players who would go on to be selected at the 2012 NHL Entry draft: Brown, Scott Laughton, Matt Finn, Adam Pelech, Scott Kosmachuk, Jake Paterson, and Matia Marcantuoni.[2]

Brown was selected in the 13th round (251st overall) of the 2010 OHL Priority Draft by the Erie Otters.[3] He spent the 2010–11 season playing Junior "A" hockey for the St. Michael's Buzzers in the Ontario Junior Hockey League.

Brown joined the Otters for the 2011–12 season and led the team in points (53), goals (25), and assists (28), and was named to the OHL's All-Rookie Team.[4][5] However, he recorded a Plus-minus of minus-72, a jarring statistic that was also the worst plus-minus of any player in the league (second worst was teammate Kris Grant with minus-61).[6] The plus-minus was a result of an Otters team that finished last in the whole league, resulting in the franchise drafting first overall in the OHL draft and selecting future NHL star Connor McDavid. Brown entered the 2012 NHL Draft and was selected in the sixth round, 156th overall by his hometown Toronto Maple Leafs. Brown's offensive talent lead the Maple Leafs to select him, but his small stature and historically bad plus-minus caused the pick to be called a "gamble."[4]

He returned to the Otters for the 2012–13 season, serving as the captain of the team.[7]

Brown spent the 2013–14 OHL season on a line with McDavid, scoring 45 goals and 83 assists for 128 points in 68 games. He went on to score 8 goals and 10 assists in 14 games during the playoffs to cap off what was the best season in the team's history.[8] Brown was awarded both the Jim Mahon Memorial Trophy as the OHL's top scoring right winger, and the Eddie Powers Memorial Trophy as the top scoring player in the OHL.[9] At the time of his departure, he held the Otters franchise record for most points in a single season. His record has since been passed by former line-mate Dylan Strome, who beat it by one point the following season.[10]

Professional[edit]

On November 22, 2013, the Leafs signed Brown to a three-year entry level contract.[11] In his first year with the Marlies, he won the AHL Rookie scoring title, finishing the regular season with 21 goals and 40 assists.[12] Until March 2016 when he was recalled by the Maple Leafs, he played for the Toronto Marlies, the Leafs' AHL affiliate.

Brown almost made the Maple Leafs out of training camp for the 2015–16 season, but was kept in the AHL to further his development.[13] However he would be called up to the team late in the season as part of an initiative by the team to give AHL rookies some late season experience. Brown made his NHL debut on March 17, 2016 against the Florida Panthers, and scored his first NHL goal on March 24 against future teammate Frederik Andersen of the Anaheim Ducks.

Brown made the Maple Leafs full-time for the 2016–17 season, however, a deep presence of forward depth meant Brown was playing on the 4th line with Matt Martin, though he saw time on the penalty kill. After five games in a limited role, Maple Leafs veteran forward Milan Michálek was placed on waivers in order to make room and give Brown a bigger role on the team. Former Maple Leaf Ben Smith rejoined the team via waivers in order to take Brown's former spot. He played the rest of the year mostly on a line with Nazem Kadri and Leo Komarov, collecting 20 goals and compiling a total of 36 points.

On August 26, 2017, the Maple Leafs signed Brown (who was a restricted free agent) to a three-year, $6.3 million contract worth $2.1 million annually.[14]

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2009–10 Toronto Marlboros GTHL 80 25 44 69 16
2010–11 St. Michael's Buzzers OJHL 49 17 22 39 18 3 0 1 1 0
2011–12 Erie Otters OHL 68 25 28 53 14
2012–13 Erie Otters OHL 63 28 41 69 39
2013–14 Erie Otters OHL 68 45 83 128 22 14 8 10 18 8
2014–15 Toronto Marlies AHL 76 21 40 61 10 5 1 3 4 2
2015–16 Toronto Marlies AHL 34 11 18 29 8 15 7 2 9 6
2015–16 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 7 1 5 6 0
2016–17 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 82 20 16 36 10 6 0 1 1 0
NHL totals 89 21 21 42 10 6 0 1 1 0

Awards and honours[edit]

Award Year Ref
OHL First All-Rookie Team 2011–12 [5]
Jim Mahon Memorial Trophy – OHL Top Scoring Right Winger 2013–14 [15]
Eddie Powers Memorial Trophy – OHL Top Scorer 2013–14 [15]
Red Tilson Trophy – OHL’s Most Outstanding Player 2013–14 [16]
OHL First All-Star Team 2013–14 [17]
AHL All-Star Game 2014–15 [18]
AHL Rookie Scoring Title 2014–15 [12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hansler, Clayton (July 6, 2012). "A Great Canadian Story: Matt Finn & Connor Brown". Marlies.ca. Retrieved August 25, 2014. 
  2. ^ Simmons, Steve (June 25, 2012). "GTHL's own magnificent seven". Toronto Sun. Retrieved August 25, 2014. 
  3. ^ "OHL Priority Selection Results". OntarioHockeyLeague.com. Retrieved August 25, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b "Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Connor Brown playing beyond expectations". The National Post. February 14, 2014. Retrieved April 24, 2017. 
  5. ^ a b OHL Network: OHL All-Rookie Teams Announced
  6. ^ "Player Statistics: 2011-12 Regular Season". OntarioHockeyLeague.com. Retrieved April 24, 2017. 
  7. ^ "Connor Brown named captain of the Otters". Erie Otters Official Website. September 15, 2012. Retrieved August 25, 2014. 
  8. ^ Rush, Curtis (May 6, 2014). "Maple Leafs prospect Connor Brown wins OHL top player award". Toronto Star. Retrieved August 25, 2014. 
  9. ^ News Centre: OHL Year End Awards
  10. ^ Morreale, Mike (March 22, 2015). "Erie's Strome wins OHL scoring title with career day". NHL. Retrieved April 7, 2015. 
  11. ^ "Maple Leafs sign Brown to entry-level contract". NHL Official Website. November 22, 2013. Retrieved August 25, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b "Toronto Marlies on Twitter". Twitter. April 21, 2015. Retrieved April 30, 2015. 
  13. ^ "Maple Leafs’ newest rookie Connor Brown happy to ‘be recognized’". The Globe and Mail. March 17, 2016. Retrieved April 24, 2017. 
  14. ^ http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/leafs-sign-connor-brown-three-year-extension/
  15. ^ a b OHL Network: 2013–14 Regular Season Award Winners
  16. ^ "Connor Brown wins Red Tilson trophy". Ontario Hockey League. 2014-03-29. Retrieved 2014-03-29. 
  17. ^ "OHL announces 2013–14 All-Star Teams". Ontario Hockey League. 2014-05-03. Retrieved 2014-05-03. 
  18. ^ "All-Star roster changes, started named". American Hockey League. January 21, 2015. Retrieved January 23, 2014. 

External links[edit]