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Montreal Canadiens Prospect Signs Contract In Europe



Montreal Canadiens Oliver Kapanen

Montreal Canadiens prospect Oliver Kapanen has signed a contract with Timra IK (SHL).

The contract runs until 2025-26, however, Habs fans should not worry when it comes to this particular player.

Kapanen was expected to sign with Timra IK, as his father, Kimmo Kapanen, happens to be the current general manager of the team. Making the move from the Finnish league (Liiga) to the the SHL should lead to a higher level of competition for the 20-year-old centre, not to mention a higher quality of teammate.

Kapanen ends his Liiga career with 27 goals and 38 assists in 124 games for Kalpa, though it should be noted he improved his production significantly down the stretch of the final season, not to mention in the playoffs,

This season he managed to score 14 goals and 20 assists in 51 games, a slight uptick compared to the 27 points he secured in 55 games the previous year. Those are relatively healthy numbers, though given that Kapanen was drafted in the second round of the 2021 NHL Entry Draft, an increase in production was to be expected.

It was his play for Kalpa in the playoffs this season that really impressed, as he maintained a point-per-game pace, scoring seven goals and seven assists in 13 games.

Montreal Canadiens Brass Tacks

While Kapanen is expected to return to Europe, the Canadiens can still sign him to an entry-level contract.

According to Sportbladet, the Habs are expected to sign the defensively responsible forward this summer. Timra IK expects the Habs will then loan Kapanen to the team, which would essentially rule him out from playing in the AHL with the Laval Rocket.

On that note, Kapanen is still free to attend the upcoming training camp, which means he will also have an opportunity to earn a roster spot in the NHL, albeit it’s not a likely outcome.

It’s a similar situation to how Emil Heineman eventually made his way to North America, via Leksands IF (SHL).

All things considered, given his recent uptick in scoring, joining the SHL is the perfect fit for the budding prospect. That’s not to say he doesn’t have the talent needed to play in the AHL, but he will almost certainly receive more ice time with Timra IK than he would have gotten with the Laval Rocket.


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Considering how loaded we are with prospects, we don’t have prime playing spots for everyone in Laval anyway. Hopefully he kills it in Sweden this year and when his team is eliminated he joins Laval for a long playoff run. 😁