Jesperi Kotkaniemi
Jesperi Kotkaniemi
19-Year-Old CenterC
Montreal Canadiens
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Kotkaniemi enjoyed a relatively successful rookie campaign in 2018-19, posting 11 goals and 23 assists while firing 134 shots on net in 79 games. Along with rookie camp and preseason action, that sounds like a lot of hockey for an 18-year-old, and it was. He tired over the course of the year, and as a result, his playing time dipped below 13 minutes per contest over the final five weeks of the season. Coach Claude Julien definitely gave the young Finn a chance to succeed, gifting him offensive zone starts 61.9 percent of the time, but it's hardly surprising that the teenager wasn't able to produce eye-popping offensive totals in his first season as a pro. With a full year in the NHL now under his belt, fantasy owners can expect Kotkaniemi to receive increased playing time in 2019-20, which should allow the third overall pick from the 2018 draft to improve his production across the board. The 6-foot-2 forward underwent arthroscopic knee surgery in April, but he should be ready to go for training camp. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a three-year, entry-level contract with Montreal in July of 2018.
Dropped to fourth line
CMontreal Canadiens
October 16, 2019
Kotkaniemi had one shot, one block and finished minus-2 over 12:43 of ice time in Tuesday's 3-1 loss to the Lightning.
ANALYSIS
Kotkaniemi's line was caught out on a long shift (1:40), unable to clear the puck out of its own zone, and on the ice for a Braydon Coburn goal with seven seconds left in the first period that tied the game at one apiece. His line was on the ice for both of Tampa Bay's even-strength goals, and the natural center was eventually demoted to fourth-line duty as a winger.
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2019–20 Time On Ice Stats
  • Average Time On Ice:
    13:04
  • Average Power Play TOI:
    0:15
  • Average Short-Handed TOI:
    0:00
 
Ice Time
Power Play
Short-Handed
2018–19
13:44
1:56
0:00
2019–20
13:04
0:15
0:00
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2018 Fantasy Outlook
Kotkaniemi spent 2017-18 playing for Assat Pori of SM-liiga -- the top Finnish hockey league -- posting 29 points over 57 games. It wasn't until a strong showing at U18s in April that the 18-year-old shot up draft boards, eventually being taken third overall in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft by the Canadiens. He possesses an elite mind for the game and formidable size at 6-foot-2 but may need to improve his skating to contribute at the highest level. He impressed the brass enough in rookie camp that they wouldn't rule him out for the Opening Night roster, but the most likely scenario involves him beginning the campaign in the AHL and potentially debuting at some point later in the season.
More Fantasy News
Snipes second goal of season
CMontreal Canadiens
October 9, 2019
Kotkaniemi scored on one of his two shots and had two PIM in a 5-4 overtime loss to Buffalo on Wednesday.
ANALYSIS
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Part of second-period rally
CMontreal Canadiens
October 4, 2019
Kotkaniemi scored a goal on three shots and added two hits in 12:54 of ice time in Thursday's 4-3 shootout loss to Carolina.
ANALYSIS
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Larger role this season?
CMontreal Canadiens
September 21, 2019
Kotkaniemi is being eyed for more playing time this coming season, Stu Cowan of the Montreal Gazette reports.
ANALYSIS
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Playing Wednesday
CMontreal Canadiens
September 17, 2019
Kotkaniemi (knee) will be in the lineup for Wednesday's matchup with Florida, John Lu of TSN.ca reports.
ANALYSIS
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Adds bulk
CMontreal Canadiens
Knee
September 12, 2019
Kotkaniemi (knee) reported to training camp 10 pounds heavier than last season, Stu Cowan of the Montreal Gazette reports.
ANALYSIS
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