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New York Rangers Retain RFA Forward

Kappo Kakko signed

There was some doubt, but it seems the New York Rangers have gotten Kaapo Kakko signed. News broke on June 13 that restricted free agent forward has a new deal. The contract is $2.4 million and is for one year.

Kaapo Kakko Signed Again by Rangers

Kakko has only played with the Blueshirts in his five year NHL career. The Finnish right wing totaled 13 goals and six assists for 19 points in 61 games this season. He had a relative Corsi of 52.3 and a Corsi for of 2.0.

The 23-year-old has 57 goals and 60 assists for 117 points in 300 career games. New York originally took Kakko with the second overall pick of the 2019 NHL Draft. The Turku, Finland native has four goals and five assists in 44 Stanley Cup Playoff games in his career.

He’s also represented his native Finland at the international level. Kakko has won gold at the Under-18, World Junior and IIHF World Championships. He accomplished the last two golds in the same season with the junior and senior team in 2019. However, that international success hasn’t really translated into the NHL level.

What it Means for the Rangers

Kakko has been a very good defensive player after a nightmarish first season under then head coach David Quinn. However, the goals have not come for the former second overall selection.

Both Gerard Gallant and Peter Laviolette have scratched Kakko in key Stanley Cup Playoff games. Some are worried that the bust label is awaiting Kakko, as he’s not lived up to the hype coming into the league.

However, some are hoping he’ll be a late-bloomer much like teammate Alexis Lafreniere was. Kakko is still only 23 years old at the time of his signing, but his time in the Big Apple may be running out unless he starts contributing more on offence.

Main photo by: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports


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