LA Kings Prospect Profiles: Kasper Simontaival

LA Kings Prospect Profiles Quinton Byfield, Arthur Kaliyev, and Tobias Bjornfot

Kasper Simontaival

2021-22 Team: KalPa
Date of Birth: January 11, 2002
Place of Birth: Tampere, FIN
Ht: 5-foot-9
Wt: 177 pounds
Shoots: Right
Position: RW
Acquired: 2020 NHL Draft #66 overall

Kasper Simontaival Bio

Kasper Simontaival played his U16 through U20 hockey with Tappara in Finland. He dominated his second U16 season, posting 42 goals and 20 assists through just 22 games. He played his first two games of U20 hockey in the 2017-18 season, and went on to continue to impress in the 2018-19 season with the U20 team — he recorded nine goals and 18 assists in 27 games.

Kasper Simontaival Tappara
Kasper Simontaival of Tappara (Arno Hamalainen_)

During the 2018-19 season, Simontaival also began playing with Tappara of the Liiga, with two assists in five games. In his pre-draft season, he played most of his games with the U20 team, totaling 25 goals and 32 assists in 48 games, but he also got in four games in the Liiga.

At the 2020 NHL Entry Draft, the Los Angeles Kings selected Simontaival in the third round, 66th overall. He followed that up with another season with Tappara of the Liiga, scoring three goals and four assists in 30 games. He also played at the World Junior Championship (WJC) for Finland, scoring at a point-per-game pace — four goals and three assists in seven games.

So far this season, Simontaival has played 18 games with KalPa of the Liiga, recording three goals and five assists.

Scouting Report

Simontaival is an elite playmaker. His hockey IQ and creativity are rare, and they have carried and will carry him throughout his career. He is a great option to have in a prospect pool, as his ability to make something out of nothing is unique.

Related: Kings’ Prospect Pool Alone Makes a Pretty Impressive Roster

Simontaival doesn’t have many downfalls. Some have struggled with his skating, but it is not a big issue by any means, and he is not as stellar defensively — an issue that comes along with his size.

NHL Projection

While it is tough to determine where Simontaival might end up in the Kings’ lineup given their plethora of forward prospects, he could be a top-six player one day. Most of the team’s forward depth lies at center, so there is room for him on the right side. Craig Button has compared Simontaival to Cam Atkinson. They are both smaller players — Atkinson is 5-foot-8, 176 pounds — who are offensively gifted; in his career thus far, Atkinson has scored 230 goals and 208 assists in 672 games.

Cam Atkinson, Philadelphia Flyers
Cam Atkinson, Philadelphia Flyers (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

While it might be a stretch to say Simontaival will have a similar career, if he continues to develop as he has been and raises his defensive game to an NHL level, he could be a big part of the Kings’ future.


Prolific goal-scorer with quick, quality hands…his shot is a legit threat…can also deliver dangerous passes.

Draftin Europe

He may not be the biggest kid on the ice, but Simontaival plays with intensity and is always looking to ram his offensive prowess right down his opponents’ throats. He spends a lot of time hovering near his own line in search of passes to pick off and turn into instant odd-man rushes…Creating time and space is rarely a problem for someone with quick feet and advanced puck control like Simontaival, and his anticipation off the hop is quite high…From a skating standpoint, Simontaival maintains a slightly hunched posture but can drop a quick first step. Having a low center of gravity might make one think his stride is short or choppy, but Simontaival’s stride is long and clean, and he can outpace pressure even from an equal starting point. He’s nimble and agile in tight spaces, and Simontaival is consistent in his ability to fake or juke an opponent to lean the wrong way and beat them to a spot for a clean look.

Steve Kournianos, The Draft Analyst

He’s small but quick with excellent hands and a desire to create…There’s a lot of room for him to improve certain elements of his game, but I think his speed helps lessen any size worries.

Chris Peters, ESPN


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