Kaapo Kakko, the No. 2-ranked prospect for the 2019 NHL draft, is not going to be collaborating within the NHL scouting mix this week in Buffalo, New York, the NHL confirmed Tuesday.
The league didn’t supply a purpose for his absence, however Kakko simply accomplished a gold medal run with Crew Finland on the IIHF Males’s World Championship in Slovakia on Sunday and took half within the workforce’s homecoming celebration Monday in Finland.
In Sunday’s gold medal recreation, Finland defeated Canada Three-1 to assert its third-ever gold medal on the senior degree in males’s hockey. In response to stories in Finnish media, 2.54 million folks tuned in to the ultimate, representing practically half the inhabitants of the nation.
The workforce was feted by an estimated 50,000 followers at a downtown park in Helsinki on Monday after receiving a Finnish Air Pressure escort residence.
Kakko has made vital positive aspects this season on consensus No. 1 draft prospect Jack Hughes. On the latest world championship, Kakko registered six objectives and one help to report the second-highest level whole by a U18 participant in World Championship historical past.
It additionally marked Kakko’s third world championship in as many tries. He additionally helped Finland win the World Males’s Beneath-18 Championship in 2018 and the World Junior Championship in January. He’s the youngest participant in IIHF historical past to finish the trifecta.
Moreover, the Finnish phenom had top-of-the-line scoring seasons by a U18 participant in Finland’s high professional league. Kakko posted 38 factors in 45 video games for TPS Turku in Liiga play. Solely Florida Panthers middle Aleksander Barkov and Nashville Predators winger Mikael Granlund had increased level totals on the similar age.
The NHL expects 103 prospects for the 2019 NHL draft to take part within the mix. NHL groups are already interviewing gamers in Buffalo, with the bodily testing portion of the mix to be held Saturday.
Kakko’s agent, Mike Liut, mentioned NHL golf equipment “are totally in help” of his consumer lacking the scouting mix to rejoice the nation’s world championship.
The New Jersey Devils maintain the No. 1 total decide, with the New York Rangers proudly owning the second decide within the 2019 NHL draft.