An offensively gifted winger who plays with a physical edge and has an electric shot. He projects as a top-six NHL winger with first-line potential.
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June 2023 – Kemell returned from the World Juniors empty-handed as Team Finland was knocked out in the quarterfinals vs Team Sweden. While there, he managed four points in five games, tied for first on the team. He returned to JYP for the second half of the season and struggled to produce with a meager five points in his final 15 games and shot a paltry 6%. His fortunes would soon change once he was assigned to the AHL, where he exploded for 23 points in 28 games between the regular season and playoffs, buoyed by shooting over 20%. Likely to return to the AHL for a full season in 2023/24, he is primed to build off his outstanding start in North America, with the chance to get a few NHL games and an outside shot of sticking in the lineup if his production continues. What a steal at 17th overall. Jeff Grybel
December 2022 – Kemell is off to the World Junior Championship and is set to be one of the tournament’s top forwards. The Finnish forward could use this break from Liiga to hopefully rediscover his level of production from 2021-22. Kemell’s points-per-game has slipped from 0.59 to 0.42 this year. It doesn’t help to be on one of the lesser teams in Finland’s top league, but still, the downward trend in production is never a positive sign. A big WJC would be a huge confidence boost for Kemell. Curtis Rines
October 2022 – Kemell has had a hot start to his Liiga season. Through 11 games, the Finnish winger has scored five goals and seven points. His current points-per-game rate of 0.636 is a solid jump up from last year’s 0.589. Look for him to be one of Finland’s key players once again at the 2023 World Juniors. Curtis Rines
July 2022 – The Predators announced that Kemell has been signed to his three-year entry-level deal. Kemell is set to return to Liiga for another year with JYP. Curtis Rines
July 2022 – Kemell has been selected by the Nashville Predators with the 17th overall pick in the 2022 NHL Draft. Nick Richard
December 2021 – Kemell has been the biggest riser in the public draft sphere through the first half of the season and it’s easy to see why. He got off to an incredible start in his first full season in Liiga, scoring 10 goals in his first 13 games and jumping out to an early scoring lead. An injury has slowed him down but he is still on pace for one of the best U20 seasons in Liiga history as a first-year draft eligible. Kemell has also been named to Finland’s roster for the upcoming World Juniors and is expected to play a significant role with half of a Liiga season under his belt. Nick Richard
September 2021 – Joakim Kemell had a very strong debut in Finland’s U20 league where he finished 18th in scoring (36 points in 38 games) as a 16-year-old in 2020-21. In April 2021, he became the first 2004-born player to debut in Liiga and scored a goal right away. He made a good impression in May at the U18s, finishing the tournament with three goals in seven games. Kemell was the standout for team Finland at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup this year, finishing with five goals and an assist in six games. He was far and away the best player on the team, leading them both offensively and defensively. The expectation for Kemell is to play his draft year with JYP in Liiga.
Kemell is a very skilled and dangerous winger who possesses a lethal shot and he will definitely fill the net with a lot of pucks. He has natural goal-scoring predatory instincts and can score in many different ways. Kemell just wants the puck on his stick so he can be the difference-maker and rightfully so as he is a very creative and confident player. The Finnish winger is a strong skater with great speed and edgework and you can regularly see him carrying the puck through the neutral zone. I would also describe him as a versatile player with very strong off-puck skills. He can be physical, likes to hit, and is not afraid to block opposing shots with his body. He is a player who loves to get under the opponent’s skin and who seeks out contact consistently. Joakim Kemell has been on my radar for a long time and there is so much to like about his game. Definitely a player to keep your eyes on early in the 2022 NHL Draft. Marek Novotny