Teemu Kivihalme

Toronto Maple Leafs
Photo courtesy of Liiga.fi

Fantasy Summary

Average-sized two-way defenseman with good puck-moving skills and very good skating ability. A very smart player who makes the right decision most of the time and can be relied on both ends of the ice.


Attributes
Fantasy Upside 5.0
NHL Certainty 6.5
Country FIN
Position D
Roster Type System
Shoot/Glove Left
Date of Birth June 14, 1995
Height 6‘0”
Weight 181 lbs
Drafted 2013 Round 5; Overall: 140

Observations

May 2019 – 23-year-old free agent defenseman Kivihalme has signed a one-year entry level contract with the Maple Leafs. Kivihalme was originally drafted by the Predators but after not showing much progress during his NCAA years, he never received a contract offer from them and therefore his rights expired. Despite having a completely Finnish name, Kivihalme has been born and raised in USA. But his father is Finnish, and therefore Kivihalme decided to jump to Finland after his college career. It appears that was the perfect place for him because his game has developed tremendously over the past two years. Kivihalme has average size (6-0, 181) and decent offensive skills but his biggest strengths are his skating and hockey sense. He’s a very smart player who makes excellent reads and decisions with and without the puck. He’s mostly known as a puck-moving defenseman but he’s a reliable defensive player as well. He isn’t a flashy player by any means and doesn’t take unnecessary risks.

Kivihalme had nine goals and 30 points in 60 games this season but it’s important to notice that 23 of those points were scored at even strength, and the league leader among defensemen had 24. Kivihalme played about 19 minutes per game which included about a minute and a half of both power play and penalty kill time. He didn’t get to pad his stats on the power play all that much. In the playoffs, Kivihalme took his game to another level and was arguably the top defenseman in the league. His ice time increased to over 22 minutes per game, and he scored four goals and nine points in 16 games. None of his points were scored on the power play but he did have three shorthanded points. Kivihalme was one of the best even-strength defensemen in the league all season long, and that’s the type of role he could play in the NHL. He may not help much on special teams but he’s capable of jumping straight to the NHL and play on the bottom pair – the only issue is that the Leafs have a bit too much depth which makes it very difficult for him to do that.  Jokke Nevalainen


Stats

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2010-2011 Metro Southeast MEPDL 13 3 3 6 0 |          
  Team North UMHSEHL 5 0 0 0 2 |          
  Burnsville High USHS-MN 25 3 11 14 12 | Playoffs 2 0 0 0
 2011-2012 Burnsville High USHS-MN 25 8 21 29 25 | Playoffs 3 1 1 2
  B16 - Red (Final 54) MNHP-16 3 0 0 0 - |          
  Finland U17 (all) International-Jr 1 0 0 0 4 |          
 2012-2013 B17 - Red (Final 54) MNHP-17 3 0 0 0 - |          
  Team Southeast UMHSEHL 20 3 4 7 8 |          
  Burnsville High USHS-MN 25 9 21 30 22 | Playoffs 3 0 1 1
  Fargo Force USHL 4 0 1 1 0 |          
  USA U18 Hlinka Gretzky Cup 4 0 0 0 0 |          
 2013-2014 Fargo Force USHL 47 3 9 12 12 |          
  USA U19 WJAC-19 4 0 0 0 2 |          
 2014-2015 Colorado College NCAA 35 5 6 11 10 |          
 2015-2016 Colorado College NCAA 36 3 12 15 28 |          
 2016-2017 Colorado College NCAA 36 2 8 10 56 |          
 2017-2018 Kärpät Liiga 44 4 16 20 18 | Playoffs 18 0 0 0 20 
 2018-2019 Kärpät Liiga 60 9 21 30 18 | Playoffs 16 4 5 9
  Kärpät Champions HL 10 2 3 5 4 |          
  Finland EHT 3 0 1 1 2 |          
  Finland (all) International - - - - - |          
 2019-2020 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL - - - - - |          

Highlights