Jesperi Kotkaniemi Signs ELC In Montreal

Kotkaniemi at Habs development camp. (Photo: Club de hockey Canadien inc)

Third overall pick (to the apparent surprise/chagrin of at least a couple in Dallas for one reason or another…) Jesperi Kotkaniemi has made his start in Montreal official as he has officially put pen to paper on his entry-level contract with the Montreal Canadiens.


As the Canadiens begin their entrance into The Attitude Era in Montreal, Kotkaniemi is going to be one of or the centerpiece in that.  Signing now, as can be expected for a kid taken third overall in any entry draft, means that through development camp and once preseason camp begins this fall come September, he is eligible to play for the Montreal Canadiens on opening night.


However, he is expected to spend at least one more season overseas with the Porin Assat of the SHL.  However, with most likely requiring at least one more season (likely nothing more than that, though) of development and seasoning, he is still under contract over there which means that spending another season in the SHL would not burn up a year off of his entry-level contract and that he remains affordable and on board for three years regardless of whether or not that deal begins this October or in October of 2019.


For whatever it is worth, he has looked impressive in development camp but that’s just it: development camp.  Most any kid, namely one so skilled as Jesperi Kotkaniemi is, can look impressive running drills around various obstacles and pylons (literal pylons, though they do bear a strange resemblance to Dion Phaneuf…) so what comes next for Kotkaniemi is only going to continue to grow with importance and in how telling it will be as to where he will spend this season.


There is no need to rush him along.  For once, the pressure to be ready and winning is not quite there this season in Montreal.

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One Response to Jesperi Kotkaniemi Signs ELC In Montreal

  1. well I hope they plan on playing him at center since last season he was not a center..we need his development at the center position

    Bay_Bye July 1, 2018 at 12:45 pm Reply

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