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Chasing Kapanen

 There has been much Teemu Hartikainen scuttlebutt in the Oiler's section of the blogosphere lately. He's a big kid, 6' 1", 200 lbs, [shown here getting into the high-traffic area], plays with some grit in his game, but needs to improve his skating. Apparently, Jari Kurri told Kevin Prendergast that the kid has great hands and given his size and sudden production, people are now high on him. Given Prendergast's predilections involving blown smoke, we have to take this with a grain of salt. Given that, I thought it might be interesting to take a look at other NHL players from the Liga in their 18-year-old seasons.

Valtteri Filppula, Niklas Hagman, Antti Laaksonen, Jere Lehtinen, Antti Miettinen, and Teemu Selanne did not play in the Liga in their 18-year-old seasons.

I know my premise is all wrong here - rather than looking at 18-year-old production in the Liga, I only took kids that eventually landed in the NHL. I also note than many of the Finns above are or were of the flying type. A player that needs some work on his stride might not compare so well. So, I draw no conclusions from the above, but it is an interesting look at where he stands amongst his future hopeful peers.