We speculated about this last week, but it was confirmed today by Pat Steinberg that the Flames have decided to walk away from third rounder Joey Leach.
Even given Leach’s lack of offense and heavy feet, it’s a somewhat surprising decision. The 20-year old progressed relatively well during his time in the WHL, moving from a 20-point, middle pairing defender in his draft season, to a top-pairing 40+ point guy this year.
It’s unclear whether the move not to sign Leach is due entirely to his skillset, or some other factors, including whether the player wasn’t entirely interested in playing for the organization. It’s rare for mid-round prospects to play hard ball with the club that chose them, but it happens.
Leach will go back into the draft this June.