Jesperi Kotkaniemi's time in Carolina might be over sonner than expected

Published March 3, 2022 at 12:32

Since joining the NHL, Jesperi Kotkaniemi's career has been littered with ups and downs.

After a promising first season with the Canadiens in 2018-19, he was unable to make it to Montreal in the next two seasons and he eventually left the organization after a 6.1 million a year offer sheet from the Carolina Hurricanes.

Kotkaniemi has collected only 22 points in 50 games this season. Quite disappointing stats from a player who was drafted third overall in 2018.

As reported by Max Truman, from the site, Renaud Lavoie talked about Kotkaniemi on Wednesday evening during his appearance on the JiC program on TVA Sports.

Let's say that the former Canadiens forward hasn't received much praise lately from his coach, Rod Brind'Amour. (According to Lavoie)

Lavoie claims that the Finn's playing time had decreased considerably in recent games and his work ethic is starting to annoy his head coach, who even made him skip a few shifts.

The journalist went even further by stating that he is not convinced at all that Kotkaniemi will be back with the Hurricanes next year.

Many pundits expected him to sign a contract extension this summer, after his $6.1 million contract expires, but if Don Waddell has no intention of retaining his services, he just has to not submit a qualifying offer to him and if Kotkaniemi does not agree on the terms of a new contract, he will become an unrestricted free agent... at 22 years old!

He would then be released by the Canes.

Quite spectacular as a turnaround. And it must be said that the success of the Hurricanes this season could frankly harm Kotkaniemi for possible negotiations between him and the GM of the team, Don Waddell. The team is currently ranked second overall in the NHL and Kotkaniemi plays on the team's fourth line.

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