2019 NHL Draft Recap: Kalle Loponen is a skilled right-handed defenceman worth taking a chance on

This is my fourth of six 2019 NHL Draft Recap articles, in which I do a deep dive into every Maple Leafs selection from the 2019 NHL Entry Draft.
In the 7th round with the 204th overall selection, the Maple Leafs took a flier on Finnish RHD Kalle Loponen, who split time between four Finnish leagues last season: Jr. B SM-Sarja (Finland’s 2nd tier junior league), Jr. A SM-Liiga (Finland’s top junior league), the Mestis (Finland’s 2nd tier pro league), and one game in the Liiga (Finland’s top pro league), where he was actually paired with new Leafs signing Teemu Kivihalme.
He’s quite an interesting prospect (who was honestly a little bit difficult for me to get a read on at first).
Let’s get into the scouting report:
Scouting Report
Puck Moving Ability
This was the part of Loponen’s game that was a bit tough for me to get a read on at first, which is a bit strange because moving the puck is usually something that you can either do, or you can’t do, and it’s obvious. With Loponen, the tools are there, for sure. He makes a good first pass up …

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Author: 51Leafs / The Leafs Nation

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