Canadiens can't escape KK, says RDS Norman Flynn

Published August 30, 2021 at 7:47 PM

Norman Flynn stated Jesperi Kotkaniemi was decent at everything but nothing extraordinary before the CH's playoff run this year. These harsh words are not false. KK has never been able to excel in any one area of his game.

But, after losing Phillip Danault to the Los Angeles Kings, the RDS analyst believes the CH can't afford to lose the Finnish centre.

"The Habs just lost in the Stanley Cup final. They can't walk away from that goal and be satisfied with being a finalist. They must once again aim for the Stanley Cup next year with Carey Price in their lineup. This team is still in a position to contend for top honours, so they can't take a step backwards by accepting draft picks for their centre. (...) In the same summer, they can't just lose Danault and Kotkaniemi, it would be a blot on their record. Kotkaniemi is part of the team's young core with Nick Suzuki in particular to push to help the veterans so the team can succeed in raising the Stanley Cup."

He then gave his assessment of Kotkaniemi:

"At now 21, he remains a former third overall draft pick and it would be hard to throw the towel in his case immediately. He was sold as a game maker, capable of playing on the power play, and it has to be said, he has proven he can respond when the pressure is on. We've seen in the last few series that he's scored big goals in the Habs' run, finishing with five goals in 19 games during the playoffs. Management wants to see that improvement and I believe Bergevin wants Kotkaniemi on his team next year even if he has to juggle the team's payroll."

The comments are quite interesting as the salary cap situation suggests that the Tricolore may take draft picks and try to acquire another centre.

Credits: RDS
August 30   |   192 answers
Canadiens can't escape KK, says RDS Norman Flynn

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