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I'll explain my rationale for picking Draisaitl in this spot. It won't be in the sense of typical home-ice advantage, since there won't be any fans, and players from the local team will also be staying in a hotel. As the year wound down, Kotkaniemi began to rise in the rankings. He would also be a major part of Team Finland at the World Juniors. He’s often been compared to countryman, Sebastian Aho for their similar abilities. Similar to his situation on his club team, he was deployed in a bottom six role and was unable to hit the scoresheet in five contests. A low-key comparable for Kotkaniemi is Anze Kopitar. Because he has signed an NHL contract, it’s up to the team to decide where he plays this season. There, he suited up for the final four contests. The Canadiens are not Cup contenders by any means, so Kotkaniemi’s development should be number one priority when making the decision of where he plays. The term, ‘slick’ is often attached to Kupari and for good reason. Follow me on Twitter @JokkeNevalainen. My older son wanted to buy the last two surprise mini-figurines there, who would be unknown until after we purchased. He can still use some more power behind his shot, but that’s not uncommon for a teenager. The Islanders as a team also finished 31st (dead last) in overall power-play time and 30th with 29 power-play goals, so they're also not receiving a ton of power-play opportunities to start with. He just turned 18 a month ago. Quinn Hughes), remember that Kotkaniemi went straight to the NHL after his draft season and will only turn 20 in a matter of days. The final ranking will be released on Thursday, June 14th. Maybe, just maybe, Edmonton's role as a hub city helps McDavid and Draisaitl in some way. The good news is that the Canadiens have ample time to figure it out – they can give him big minutes during the preseason, and they can also give him nine regular season games before burning the first year of his entry level contract. That puts him in some pretty lofty company. Frozen Tools and DobberProspects launched in 2008, helping to form the nucleus of the Dobber Sports Network: dedicated to helping you win your fantasy hockey leagues. His intelligence is quite often on full display. But is he ready to be an impact player at the NHL level? The AHL is all about playing and travelling. Yes, he was a full-time player in Liiga already last season but that was as a middle-six winger. There isn’t much time to do anything else there. I don’t think so. It was a bit of an uphill battle for Kupari this season. If Kotkaniemi is also available, Montreal fans may want to keep an eye on the tournament played in Vancouver and Victoria because it’s not often you see the entire future of your team’s center depth in one international tournament. At the time of writing, we haven’t quite completed Round 1 yet. Aho was selected 35th overall by Carolina in 2015. Ramblings: Top Frozen Tools Searches – Kotkaniemi, Pulock (July 4). Players don’t get much guidance there, they’re just expected to play and win – which isn’t necessarily a bad thing but teenagers usually require some guidance and time to focus on improving certain parts of their game. Whether playoff games are actually played or not, I'm looking forward to the rest of this draft, as it gives me something to do fantasy hockey wise! Pori Ässät team in the Finnish Liiga promoted today’s preseason game as “Jesperi Kotkaniemi’s final game in Pori for now”. It will be interesting to see how the two are slotted in. However, it's Fourth of July weekend in the US, and COVID-19 cases stateside are not trending in the right direction. He notched three goals and nine points in seven tournament games. Earlier in the week I was bored, so I took Dobber's advice and paid a visit to the Forum. The 17-year-old doesn’t bode the cleanest stride or the quickest acceleration, but he does get around the ice well enough. Some teenagers are mature enough to succeed in the AHL but we’ve also seen some highly-regarded prospects whose development is completely stalled there. Not bad. Check back in tomorrow morning for Part Two. (2/2) This week's most popular #fantasyhockey profile pages:6) Jesperi Kotkaniemi Ryan Pulock Martin Necas Adam Fox Auston Matthews He has strong anticipation skills which help him read defense schemes. Pori Ässät team in the Finnish Liiga promoted today’s preseason game as “Jesperi Kotkaniemi’s final game in Pori for now”. Well, it’s because it was Kotkaniemi’s final game before he travels to Montreal and joins the training camp of the Canadiens. So even a bump to the first unit may not help Pulock's value a great deal. Frozen Tools and DobberProspects launched in 2008, helping to form the nucleus of the Dobber Sports Network: dedicated to helping you win your fantasy hockey leagues. Maybe with familiarity with local amenities, but we won't be talking about teams entering a hostile environment or anything like that. Stepping into the top league as a 17-year-old is difficult. This week, there are two new names that will be of varying interest in fantasy leagues. He has something of a clunky stride but the mechanics can be worked on as he continues to build strength. This behind [...], Jokke Nevalainen2020-09-30T11:52:05-04:00September 21st, 2020|, In Episode 8 of Dobber’s DraftCast, hosts Tony Ferrari and Jokke Nevalainen are joined by ESPN's NHL Draft analyst Chris Peters (@chrismpeters) to discuss the best American prospects for the 2020 and 2021 NHL [...], Tony Ferrari2020-09-30T11:57:16-04:00September 14th, 2020|, In Episode 7 of Dobber’s DraftCast, hosts Tony Ferrari and Jokke Nevalainen are joined by Jimmy Hamrin (@jimmyhamrin), a Swedish regional scout for McKeen's Hockey and the host of The Future of Hockey podcast, to discuss the [...], Jokke Nevalainen2020-09-30T12:09:02-04:00September 7th, 2020|, In Episode 6 of Dobber’s DraftCast, hosts Tony Ferrari and Jokke Nevalainen are joined by the founder of Scouching, Will Scouch, to discuss 2020 NHL Draft risers and fallers. It’s even more challenging to add those playing in a European top league. Ikonen was drafted 58th overall in 2017, and he spent last season as the third-line center for KalPa in the Finnish Liiga. This will be especially true as his lower half strengthens. Poehling, Olofsson and Ikonen should all play at the World Juniors if they’re healthy. Kotkaniemi uses that ability to exploit opponents with his vision and distribution skills. Finally, after Kärpät was eliminated from club play, Kupari was airlifted over the World U18 Championships. He also made some nice plays to create some chances that didn’t end up on the score sheet. Although someone like Nick Suzuki might be a young center with higher upside on the same roster, the Habs will still have very high hopes for a player that they drafted third overall just two summers ago. The Battle of the Centres – Part One (Kotkaniemi and Kupari), Dobber’s DraftCast Episode 10: Reviewing and Dissecting the 2020 NHL Draft, Dobber’s DraftCast Episode 9: Draft Rankings Top-100 Scouting Meeting, Dobber’s DraftCast Episode 8: U.S. Prospects with Chris Peters, Dobber’s DraftCast Episode 7: Swedish Prospects with Jimmy Hamrin, Dobber’s DraftCast Episode 6: 2020 NHL Draft Risers & Fallers with Will Scouch, Prospect Ramblings: Rounds 2 to 7 Winner and Losers, Prospect Ramblings: Round 1 Winners, Losers, and In-Betweeners. In He did not earn a spot on the U20 team for the World Junior Championships but was a force at the U18s. His time in the middle of the ice during the 2017-18 campaign took place on the international stage. Olofsson is a nice player but just seems destined for that third-line center role where he needs to focus on the defensive side of the game a bit more. He showed some flashes last season but focused on playing a reliable two-way game which is also important for his future in the NHL. Feel free to follow me on twitter at CrazyJoeDavola3, Tony Ferrari2020-10-12T15:34:09-04:00October 12th, 2020|, On this episode of Dobber’s DraftCast, hosts Tony Ferrari and Jokke Nevalainen take a look at the 2020 NHL Draft and how the selections on draft day compared to the DobberProspects' Scouting Team Top-100. It’s unlikely he’d become a huge offensive force but he can do enough to play that type of role without hurting the production of his wingers. It was a successful year for his development but now he needs to take that next step. I stumbled upon a playoff pool with an interesting twist, which was that each participant could choose one player from each of the 24 remaining teams. Jesperi Kotkaniemi Earlier this week, I took my sons to the nearby dollar store. No, I don’t think my son will be trying to re-enact that hit with his figurines. This season, he can be a top-six center for Ässät which would be tremendous for his development. AHL teams are so focused on winning at any cost which can sometimes hurt the progress of a young individual. I’ve targeted four pivots who could conceivably go in any order this June. DobberHockey and Goalie Post launched in 2005, becoming the first independent fantasy hockey and starting goalie websites on the Internet. Aho followed that up with a tremendous draft-plus two season where he elevated his play and his production a great deal. With multiple teams in various sports having players test positive for COVID-19, it's easy to shrug off this news at this point. Kotkaniemi led the charge offensively for the U18 gold medal-winning squad. No adds, drops, or trades, and all players will remain on each roster at all times. They may not even have the type of coaches who can properly help their youngsters. I wonder if this is a possible "handedness" issue. After a rookie season in which he scored 34 points (11g-23a) in 79 games, Kotkaniemi fell victim to the sophomore slump with just eight points (6g-2a) in 36 games. Two from the Finnish Liiga and two from the CHL. Ryan Poehling had a very good season at college after the Canadiens drafted him 25th overall in 2017. That’s not overly common for a player in his situation. And the Canadiens have a desperate need for someone who can play center for them. My older son wanted to buy the last two surprise mini-figurines there, who would be unknown until after we purchased. © 2020 Dobber Sports Inc. All Rights Reserved. The slick pivot did well in his limited role but wasn’t afforded the same opportunities that Kotkaniemi was. At the very least, it seems as though he'll be available if Claude Julien wishes to use him. Ässät scored two goals, and Kotkaniemi finished the game with two assists. Earlier this week, I took my sons to the nearby dollar store. For what it's worth, the 2018 third overall pick was a point-per-game player in the AHL (13 points in 13 games) before the injury. The Rankings presented are from my lists that have run from last August. Projected as a centre at the NHL level, he played almost exclusively on the wing during his tenure with Ässät. That’s all for tonight. He produced over a half-point-per-game as a U18 player in a top men’s league.

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