Kasperi Kapanen has been traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins, returning to where his career started having been drafted by the Penguins 22nd overall in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.
The Toronto Maple Leafs will get back a first round draft pick in the deal. The Leafs will pick 15th overall, after trading their 13th overall pick in a deal with Carolina to free up some cap space in June.
The Leafs cleared up some more cap space in this trade deal. Kapanen has a cap of $3.2 million USD for the next two years remaining in his three-year contract.
“Toronto wins the trade,” according to Darren Dreger, TSN’s Hockey Insider. “I think Kasperi Kapanen is a good player but he didn’t do much for the Toronto Maple Leafs.”
He had no criticism of the move, giving general manager Kyle Dubas full credit for the move.
“All of the elements and then the cap space, I don’t know how Kyle [Dubas] could do much better.”
Beyond the Penguins’ first round draft pick, Toronto also picked up Evan Rodrigues, Filip Hallander and David Warsofsky in exchange for Kapanen, Pontus Aberg and Jesper Lindgren. The trade was announced on Aug. 25.
Hallander is expected to play centre. He has yet to play in North America. The 20-year-old was playing in the Swedish Hockey League.
Rodrigues is a 27-year-old forward with 72 points in 199 career NHL games, while Warsofsky, at 30-years-old has 11 points in 55 NHL games.
Kapanen said he was happy with the trade in a post on his verified Instagram account.
“It was a once in a lifetime opportunity to play for the Leafs. I will forever be grateful for the experience and for my teammates. That being said I could not be more excited and ready to be a Penguin again.”