Fourth Round, 119th overall: Kim Nousiainen
Birthplace: Kuopio, Finland
NHL Central Scouting final ranking: 52 (European skaters)
NHL Central Scouting midterm ranking: 51
Stats (Liiga-KalPa): 6 GP, 0-0=0
Stats (Mestis-IPK): 6 GP, 0-5=5
Stats (U-20-SM-liiga-KalPa): 32 GP, 8-20=28
Stats (Spengler Cup-KalPa): 3 GP 1-0=1
via LA Kings Head European Scout Christian Ruuttu:
Kim actually, he was at the Berlin camp with us, so our development people – O’C (Mike O’Connell), Muzz (Glen Murray), Sean (O’Donnell) and all those – they worked with him. We tested him, we watched him play, and we all fell in love with him. Kim is a little bit like Kimmo Timonen. That’s pretty much what he could say, and he’s from the same team. [Reporter: Is he a Kuopio kid, too?] He’s a Kuopio kid, and my son plays on that team, too, so we know him pretty much inside-out.
Via Future Considerations:
A pure offensive defenseman with decent tools, Nousiainen reads the game really well and he has a high hockey IQ. He’s a very good skater who accelerates quickly and uses that speed to create space for both himself and to open up other teammates. He lacks size and strength, and because of that, he has lots of work to in his own end, especially with positioning. General work ethic needs to be higher to conteract bigger, stronger forwards. That said, he doesn’t shy away from the physical game as he likes to mix it up against bigger opponents and get to the dirty areas. He’s also quite good in all three zones because of his hockey smarts and he knows how to use his stick to defend by getting in passing and shooting lanes. He has good offensive tools, but there’s not anything spectacular about his game. An older player for this draft class, he’s primarily an offensive defenseman, who excels at transitions and in the offensive zone. He can handle the puck relatively well at high speeds and made zone exits with ease at the Junior A level this past season. Whether that will translate to the next level is yet to be seen. He’s a good puck distributor to his teammates, which makes him an effective player on power play. He has to improve his shot a lot, when it comes to both accuracy and power. His weak shot is a one reason why he doesn’t shoot that much.
–Lead photo via Dave Reginek/Getty Images