The Toronto Maple Leafs and Pittsburgh Penguins have made a deal. This deal has Kasperi Kapanen sent back to the team that drafted him. The big part of the return is reportedly a first-round pick. However, both Elliotte Friedman and Darren Dreger have reported a trade. Below is the final trade for both sides.
Details for Penguins:
RW Kasperi Kapanen
D Jesper Lindgren
LW Pontus Aberg
please forgive any type
— Rob Rossi (@Real_RobRossi) August 25, 2020
Kasperi Kapanen is being traded to PIT
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) August 25, 2020
Kasperi Kapanen Traded
As the return gets updated so will this article, but for Kapanen, he is a solid middle-six type forward. He can slide up and down your lineup, however, won’t carry a top line. Kapanen has 202 NHL games under his belt and has 41 goals, 49 assists, for 90 points in those career games. Although he was originally drafted by the Penguins, Kapanen never actually played a game for the team. He was a big part of the return for Phil Kessel back in 2015.
Kapanen hasn’t quite become the player Toronto had hoped for, being someone who can’t really drive his own line. However, he is a very solid role player and on a team like Pittsburgh can bring lots of value. The ability to slide him down to the third line, or also play him with someone like Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin will be a huge asset for Pittsburgh.
Toronto picking up a first-round pick for Kapanen is very solid value. Especially if it’s Pittsburgh’s pick, which is mid-first this year. Toronto will also clear some space to make another move if they want to. This really helps them financially, getting even a few extra million to work with. Nick Robertson may end up taking Kapanen’s place on the forward core next season.
The rest of the pieces are mainly depth. However, there are a few intriguing enough names that each team may see on their roster a couple of times next year. The main part is certainly Kapanen for a first. Hallander also has the potential to be an NHL player at some point in the future.
One thing is for sure, neither General Manager was kidding when they said there need to be some changes this offseason. Both teams failed to qualify for the playoffs.