On December 11th, 2017, I made a bold claim on Twitter dot com.
i have decided that the player i want the leafs to draft in the 1st round this year is Jesperi Kotkaniemi. thank you for your time
— 2018 b.c. (@bobbycappucino) December 12, 2017
At this time, draft eligible Finnish centre/winger Jesperi Kotkaniemi was ranked in the late teens-early 20s on most draft lists. These same lists had fellow Finnish centre Rasmus Kupari much much higher. I, as well as other smart people, knew this was wrong.
Times have changed. Rumours now have Kotkaniemi going as high as 3rd overall to Montreal. This would be a good decision for Montreal, which means they are unlikely to make it – especially considering that there is talking about them moving the pick (although that feels like the typical smoke and mirrors we hear every year).
With a few other picks in the top 10 reportedly being shopped (Detroit at 6, Vancouver at 7, Chicago at 8), I’ll hold onto some hope that the Leafs trade up to one of these picks.
The reason? Jesperi Kotkaniemi kicks tremendous ass.
I’m not here to give you some scouting report on his edges and hockey IQ. I’m just going to lay down some facts.
In Liiga, Jesperi Kotkaniemi put up very similar offensive numbers to Mikko Rantanen.
Kotkaniemi did so as a younger player than Rantanen. He doesn’t turn 18 until after the draft.
Kotkaniemi can play centre and wing.
Mike Babcock has said he would love to have as many centres as possible in his lineup.
He is 6’2. Remember, size isn’t bad, it’s just bad if you choose a worse player cause they’re bigger. There aren’t many players better in this draft.
Despite tremendous forward talent in the NHL and on the wing throughout the entire depth chart, the Leafs are as thin at centre as they are defense.
Playing in Liiga allows for a much more custom (and better) development path for Kotkaniemi. The Leafs can keep him in Finland or bring him over to play in the AHL (like they did with Liljegren).
He’s got a cool name.
Grant McCagg has talked about how he’d like the Habs to draft him and I want to take that away from him because McCagg sucks.
In a world full of fake news, there should be more than enough facts here to convince you of why the Leafs need this guy.
So what will it take to get him? I dunno, I leave that up to Dubas. Trade this year’s 1st, next year’s 1st, and Connor Brown or something. I bet the Habs love Connor Brown.
What I do know is that if the Leafs manage to find a way to draft this kid, I will get his name tattooed on my ass. And that’s a certified Bobby Cappucino Promise® which has more value than most things in today’s economy.
MLN Draft #Content
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|CASE FOR TRADING UP||CALEN ADDISON||BLADE JENKINS|
|CASE FOR TRADING DOWN||RYAN MCLEOD||MAC HOLLOWELL|
|CASE FOR PICKING 25TH||JONATHAN TYCHONICK||ZACH SOLOW|
|CASE FOR TRADING THE PICK||TY DELLANDREA||BULAT SHAFIGULLIN|
|LEAFS GEEKS DRAFT PREVIEW||RYAN MERKLEY||K’ANDRE MILLER|
|BOBBY WANTS AN ASS TATTOO||BODE WILDE|
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