Whoever ends up with the first overall pick in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft is going to be forced to make a tough decision between Jack Hughes and Kaapo Kakko. Sure, Hughes has been the projected first overall pick pretty much since last year’s draft, but thanks to what Kakko has been able to do in the Liiga this season there are now two names fighting to be the top pick in the draft.
The 18-year-old Finnish winger hasn’t had any issues adjusting to the professional level this season as he leads his team in goals and sits third in points, on top of leading all rookies in scoring, as well. On Friday night, Finland’s 2019 World Junior hero made history as he set a new record for most goals by an 18-year-old.
Kakko attempted to get the puck across the crease but was quickly shutdown. Luckily for him, he got the puck right back and took full advantage of all the extra space by potting his 22nd goal of the season, surpassing Aleksander Barkov’s previous record of 21 goals from 2012-13.
Something similar happened last year in the SHL as Elias Pettersson set the record for most points by a player 20 or under with 56 and he’s had no issues adjusting to the NHL level this season.