Liiga Report – Kakko, Heinola, Honka & More (March 2019)

Lassi Alanen

2019-03-15

 

Welcome to the March edition of the Liiga report, where I will be going over players from Liiga/Mestis/Jr. A SM-liiga who have caught my attention lately. You can always follow me on Twitter at @lassialanen. Without further ado, let’s get started.

 

Kaapo Kakko, TPS

 

Kakko has been on fire for the past two months. After putting up six goals and eight points in eight games in February, he has kept his impressive production going in March by scoring three goals and adding two assists in six games. Kakko is currently tied with Aleksander Barkov for most goals by a U18 player in Liiga history. Only Barkov and Mikael Granlund have had more productive U18 seasons in Liiga history.

 

There is a solid chance that Kakko will debut with the men’s national team in the upcoming IIHF World Championship tournament, depending on how his Liiga squad will fare in the playoffs. The race for number one spot between him and Jack Hughes is now very close. Sportsnet’s Sam Cosentino was the first big name to have Kakko at the top of his list. I’m pretty confident that there will be others in the near future.

 

Ville Heinola, Lukko

 

Heinola has looked very good after returning to action after his knee injury, which he suffered at the World Juniors. There is a lot to like about his game, as he is very well-rounded for a defenceman who just turned 18. Heinola’s skating, hockey sense and skill get all good grades from me. He doesn’t have any standout skills but has the tools to become a modern puck-moving defenceman in the NHL.

 

Mikko Kokkonen, Jukurit

 

There is a lot of debate surrounding Kokkonen