F (OT)
Photo of Jesperi Kotkaniemi
Photo credit: WNCT

Surprise announcement involving Jesperi Kotkaniemi and the Canadiens

Published April 8, 2024 at 4:21 PM

After starting the season with 12 points in as many games, many believed Jesperi Kotkaniemi had finally hit his stride, but not so fast..

The former 1st round pick of the CH has, however, returned to his old habits and subsequently faced difficult moments.

So much so that he ended up on the 4th line of the Hurricanes, after having started in the top-6. In the last 52 games, he has only accumulated 9 small points. Results that explain very well his playing time of less than 10 minutes per game.

He has even been scratched by his team.

In short, in a recent edition of the Tellement Hockey podcast on Radio-Canada Sports, the excellent Martin Leclerc added more about the young man. Following a discussion with a former member of the CH coaching staff, he can now tell us more about the attitude of the Finn.

"He had the reputation of not being on his game.. I was told something again by a former member of the Canadiens coaching staff. When the pandemic arrived at the end of the regular season schedule, someone had asked him what he planned to do while waiting for the playoffs to resume a few months later and he had replied that he intended to go back home (to Finland) and play tennis. They had to have a meeting with him to explain that tennis wasn't going to cut it and that he had to train seriously for the playoffs." - Martin Leclerc

According to the journalist, Kotkaniemi's attitude was not at its best from his arrival in the NHL. Even the coaches were banging their heads, after his first rookie camp, knowing all too well who could have been drafted in his place (Brady Tkachuk).

The idea of buying out his contract was even put on the table by the trio of podcast hosts. Given his age, which is under 25, the buyout ratio would be 1/3 and not 2/3 as for those 25 and older. As we had already mentioned, buying out the Finnish player's contract by Carolina would cost less than $900,000 on their cap for the next 12 years, until the end of the 2035-2036 campaign.

So, as long as KK has not reached the age of 26, the Canes can benefit from a third of his salary buyout. The American team has until the summer of 2026 to decide and take advantage of this notable benefit.

Here is the podcast in question:

Remember KK got scratched twice in the past week, it's really not looking good for him and the Canes:

Via HabsolumentFan : De nouvelles informations font surface à propos de Jesperi Kotkaniemi
April 8   |   603 answers
Surprise announcement involving Jesperi Kotkaniemi and the Canadiens

Would you trade Joel Armia for Jesperi Kotkaniemi and a 1st round pick?

Yes18430.5 %
No41969.5 %
Latest 10 stories