The Pittsburgh Penguins announced the signing of Kasperi Kapanen, their 2014 first round draft pick, to a three-year entry-level contract on Friday morning. The agreement will begin when Kapanen turns professional.
Kapanen, who will turn 18 on July 23, was the Penguins’ 22nd overall selection in the first round of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.
The Kuopio, Finland native was the No. 1-rated European skater by NHL Central Scouting after finishing with seven goals, seven assists and 14 points in 47 games for KalPa Kuopio (SM-liiga) in the Finnish Elite League (FEL).
Some scouts have described Kapanen as an efficient scorer who takes high-percentage shots and doesn’t force the puck on net if he has an open teammate.
The 6-foot, 181-pound right wing made his Finnish League debut with KalPa at just 16 years old in 2012-13, when he put up four goals in 13 contests.
Kapanen is the son of veteran National Hockey League player Sami Kapanen, who had 458 career points in 831 NHL regular-season games. The father-son duo were teammates this year with KalPa.
Back in 2012, the Penguins found Finnish defenseman Olli Maatta with the 22nd overall pick. Time will tell if Kapanen can make the same jump to the NHL.