Leafs goalie chase coming to a Finnish

The Maple Leafs’ Finnish fishing expedition for 22-year-old goaltender Jussi Rynnas could end in a couple of days.

Agent Allain Roy says the 6-foot-5 free agent will choose an NHL destination in a day or so after a tour of cities in North America and two unscheduled visits from Toronto general manager Brian Burke. The GM chased Rynnas in Helsinki and Montreal to make a pitch.

Rynnas is believed to be considering Toronto, Edmonton, Dallas, Anaheim, Philadelphia and Montreal. Dallas appears to be a likely frontrunner, because scout Kari Takko played for Rynnas’s club team, Assat Pori.

Burke denied a report in the Finnish media on Tuesday that the Leafs are also talking to Tuomas Tarkki of Oulu Karpa, who recently signed with Modo in Sweden, but has an out clause. Age 30 now, Tarkki was Finland’s top goalie in 2007.


14 Responses to Leafs goalie chase coming to a Finnish

  1. reinjosh says:

    Looks like a lot of teams are going with size in goaltending. Gustavsson last year, Koskinen in the draft, and now Rynnas.

    Rynnas could be another Rinne in the making and seeing as how successful Rinne has been this past season, it makes sense teams will pursue him hard.

    It would be awesome to add him to the system.

    Anyone notice how the last three big hype free agents from Europe have all had Dallas and Toronto as teams they consider and on their shortlist? Interesting to note that since JFJ left in Toronto and since Doug Armstrong left in Dallas both teams have been top destinations (at least being considered) for European free agents.

  2. TheLeafNation91 says:


  3. number15 says:

    its all about depth. obviously the Leafs have faith in Gustavvson considering they just signed him for two seasons, but nothing is guaranteed. Will Gustavvson live up to expectation? will Rynnas? u never know….. so they r basically taking them both and hopefully atleast one will develop

    though dont expect Gigure to be moved now, since the Leafs need to win next season. Expect Ryannas to be in the AHL and hopefully in the NHL after that season as a backup or maybe competition for Gustavvson

    *** why does Ryannas want to be in Toronto though. Doesnt he wanna play in the NHL and the AHL? Gusstavson and Guigure are guaranteed spots unless they really screw up, so y does Ryannas want to come here?….. maybe that goalie coach? i dunno.

  4. reinjosh says:

    Well, this pretty much guarantees that Giguere will not be resigned after this next season.

    Rynnas likely came because of Allaire and the environment that Burke, Nonis and Fletcher have culminated. Allaire is considered on of, if not the, best goaltending coaches in the NHL, so the chances to develop would be huge. Burke has always been known to give players the chances they deserve and Rynnas would see that as a great thing. If he plays well but Gustavsson plays better, Burke will do everything to allow Rynnas to play somewhere (like he did with Bryzgalov). If he doesn't pan out in Toronto, he will try to get him a chance somewhere else. If Gustavsson doesn't pan out and Rynnas does, than Rynnas will get the spot. Rynnas gets a very good shot, which would likely be a huge thing to him.

  5. nordiques100 says:

    Rynnas is a prospect, but definitely a project.

    He is somewhat a late bloomer i read somewhere and will definitely need tutelage in the north american game.

    He did play in a weaker league than Gustavsson did in the SEL. So while he put up some ok numbers, keep in mind of where he was. His game will need work.

    And that's fine. They're settled in goal next year.

    He may be another Rinne we can only hope. Rinne was an 8th round selection and was about the same age as Rynnas is when he was drafted. Rinne too did fare well in the FEL.

    They have similar builds being both 6'5.

    Rinne spent about 3 years in Milwaukee before finally making the Preds roster. 

    We can only hope Rynnas follows that path. And with Allaire as his mentor, its a pretty good situation.

  6. mojo19 says:

    that's pretty cool. Signing these guys is like getting free draft picks. Keep em coming

  7. reinjosh says:

    Oh yeah, he is for sure a project. But he has some good intangibles to work with and at 6 foot 5, thats great height for a goalie. Yeah this season really came out of no where (like a more than a goal drop in his GAA and a much better SV% than last year) but its a free pick, it can't possibly hurt.

    The similarities between Rinne and Rynnas are good and hopefully indicative of something good for us. If we can go the route Nashville does, it would be sweet. Lots of goalie prospects with lots of talent. Endless supply always helps.

  8. Magleaf says:

    Seems as thoe burke is unreal at picking these kids up

    im loving it, i wasnt sure about burke when he came to T.O but he's been easy to warm up to so far, even if we do miss out on seguin

  9. JustYouW8 says:

    TSN is reporting that Toronto is close to signing Jussi Rynnas.

  10. leafy says:

    Good job by Burke. Always good when you add quality young talent in any position and especially in goal.

  11. leafy says:

    Interesting, but I like the fact he's a big goalie. They cover the net better. If he's athletic as well, this could be a great signing.

  12. number15 says:

    He is turning 23 years old soon….. the only reason he wasent noticed earlier is because, guess what, he was a backup. He finally got a chance last season and became what they r saying, the best goalie prospect in Europe.

    ***** Jonas Gustavvson was also a backup and broke through when he finally got a chance in his final year.


  13. leafit2me says:

    This is exciting. I can't wait to see what this team looks like by September. In the last 22 months the Leafs have already added Phaneuf, Schenn, Kessel, Gustavvson, Hanson, Bozak, Irwin,  Kadri and now Rynnas.  Who says that you can only build thru the draft. Thats 9 players 25 yr or younger for every position. Good job so far Burke…Good Job so far.

    You can bet Burke has already started kicking (or re-kicking if you consider the Olympics) tires on possible trade acquisitions in the off season.  Now if he can get a couple of elite top 3 forwards this off-season to go with veterans like Giguere, Komisarek, Beauchemin & Orr this team could very well be playoff bound in 2011.
    Having said that, they are still far from done rebuilding this team and thats why, as much as I don't want Nonis to be denied an opportunity to have his own team, I would like to see him stay with the TML for one more year at least. He and Burke make a good team and the TML need to rake in some more college and European talent this and next off-season to make up for the loss of draft picks (we have only drafted twice in the 1st round in spite of missing the playoff last 5 yrs straight). We gotta make sure that this team has the ability to stay competitive for years a la Red Wings.
  14. Leafs_Forever says:

    Right on.  Burke is a great GM who is taking advantage of the massive financial resources of the TML to find and sign college free agents and players from Europe.

    Re: Gustavvson, Hanson, Bozak, Irwin, and Rynnas…

    If he keeps up this pace of signing young players, can you imagine how much young talent we could have in 2-3 years.

    Another brilliant move by Burke was getting this Allaire guy (goalie coach).  He along is able to attract goalies to our team…

    It kind of makes me agree with Cliff: "Draft Shmaft!"

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