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Topi Niemelä Scouting Reports

Reports: 5
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The Pro Hockey Group
Note: Reports prior to Sept 2023 were originally graded out of ten, and also included additional categories that have been merged into the current categories.
This likely results in the overall ratings prior to 2023 being decreased in comparison to reports since Sept 2023.

For an `Apples to Apples` comparison between players, we recommend only comparing reports before, or after, Sept 2023.
Results will average out accordingly as more data is accumulated.
Events

Most Recent Report Summary

Talent Type: Professional
Position scouted: Right Defense
Age when scouted: 21
Projection: Third Pair
Trending: Under NHL Contract
Birthday: Mar. 25, 2002
Height: 5' 10 | 180 cm
Weight: 161 lbs | 73 kg
Drafted: 64 overall, 2020 round 3 (Logo of the Toronto Maple Leafs TOR)

PROGRESSION

Reports

Report #5

Sep. 17, 2023 (Updated Sep. 25, 2023)
Contract: $2,570,000 over 3 years (Cap hit: $856,667)
Position scouted: Right Defense
Age when scouted: 21
78
P3
Projection: Third Pair
Trending: Under NHL Contract
2-way/Transitional defenceman
Good feet - small area quickness is sound - cannot be described as a physical player but he doesn't shy away from contact either
Since he is giving up weight and strength he has to arrive ahead of opponents/jump to space before they have possession of the puck and can dictate the play in his zone
Has understated offensive upside - can QB the second PP unit
Solid hockey IQ in all three zones - it will take time to adjust to the smaller ice in North America
Stats Powered by Elite Prospects
SeasonTeamLeagueGPGAP+/-PIM
2023-24Toronto MarliesAHL4562127328
2022-23FinlandEHT2000-20
2022-23Toronto MarliesAHL611200
2022-23KärpätLiiga5881018012
2022-23Finland (all)International2000-20
2021-22Finland U20 (all)WJC-20 Cancelled210164
2021-22KärpätLiiga48102232820
2021-22Finland U20 (all)International-Jr925718
2021-22Finland U20WJC-20706612
  • Compete/Consistency: 78
  • Defensive Zone Starts: 68
  • Hockey IQ: 82
  • Offensive Zone Starts: 80
  • Penalty Kill: 60
  • Power Play: 82
  • Physicality: 58
  • Puck Moving/Passing: 84
  • Shot: 76
  • Skating: 80

Report #4

Mar. 3, 2023 (Updated Mar. 7, 2023)
Contract: $2,570,000 over 3 years (Cap hit: $856,667)
Position scouted: Right Defense
Age when scouted: 20
B+
P2
Projection: Second Pair
Trending: Flat
Niemela has seen some growth in areas of his game, and some drop off in other areas. He is being used in all situations playing in Liiga. On the power-play he is efficient. He directs pucks on net accurately and shows the ability to one-time pucks. Off the rush he can attack with more pace. He is over-handling pucks between the blue-lines/slowing down in the process. He's a reliable defender who is quick to space. For his stature he isn't shy about bumping up against opponents. On the penalty-kill he closes on opponents, shows willingness to block shots, and has an active stick in the lanes. The fact his offense has fallen off requires monitoring.
Stats Powered by Elite Prospects
SeasonTeamLeagueGPGAP+/-PIM
2022-23Toronto MarliesAHL611200
2022-23FinlandEHT2000-20
2022-23KärpätLiiga5881018012
2022-23Finland (all)International2000-20
2021-22Finland U20WJC-20706612
2021-22KärpätLiiga48102232820
2021-22Finland U20 (all)WJC-20 Cancelled210164
2021-22Finland U20 (all)International-Jr925718
2020-21Finland U20WJC-20726846
2020-21KärpätLiiga1504432
2020-21Kärpät U20U20 SM-sarja613400
  • Compete/Consistency: 70
  • Defensive Zone Starts: 70
  • Hockey IQ: 80
  • Penalty Kill: 70
  • Power Play: 70
  • Physicality: 50
  • Puck Moving/Passing: 70
  • Shot: 50
  • Skating: 73

Report #3

Dec. 3, 2022 (Updated Dec. 8, 2022)
Contract: $2,570,000 over 3 years (Cap hit: $856,667)
Position scouted: Right Defense
Age when scouted: 20
B+
P2
Projection: Second Pair
Trending: Flat
Offense has fallen off in his second full year playing in Liiga but his detail in other areas of the game remains trustworthy
Continues to be used in all situations, although his PP minutes have been scaled back during his fade offensively
Bulk of his average 20:00 TOI comes at ES and PK.
Competes defensively. Quick to space. High end IQ. Outlets efficiently. Still a solid prospect.
Stats Powered by Elite Prospects
SeasonTeamLeagueGPGAP+/-PIM
2022-23KärpätLiiga5881018012
2022-23Finland (all)International2000-20
2022-23Toronto MarliesAHL611200
2022-23FinlandEHT2000-20
2021-22Finland U20 (all)International-Jr925718
2021-22Finland U20WJC-20706612
2021-22KärpätLiiga48102232820
2021-22Finland U20 (all)WJC-20 Cancelled210164
2020-21Finland U20WJC-20726846
2020-21KärpätLiiga1504432
2020-21Kärpät U20U20 SM-sarja613400
  • Compete/Consistency: 80
  • Defensive Zone Starts: 80
  • Hockey IQ: 80
  • Penalty Kill: 80
  • Power Play: 70
  • Physicality: 57
  • Puck Moving/Passing: 80
  • Shot: 60
  • Skating: 80

Report #2

Aug. 19, 2022 (Updated Aug. 21, 2022)
Contract: $2,570,000 over 3 years (Cap hit: $856,667)
Position scouted: Right Defense
Age when scouted: 20
B+
P2
Projection: Second Pair
Trending: Up
A trustworthy 'D' who brings sound detail in all three zones.
Has the IQ and compete to be used in all situations ... including the PK
Fantastic vision in the offensive zone. He will wait for a lane to open up and either get the puck to the net or distribute through seems.
Defensively quick to take away time and space and willing to get in the lane to block shots
Not a big body but it doesn't hold him back.
Stats Powered by Elite Prospects
SeasonTeamLeagueGPGAP+/-PIM
2022-23Toronto MarliesAHL611200
2022-23FinlandEHT2000-20
2022-23KärpätLiiga5881018012
2022-23Finland (all)International2000-20
2021-22KärpätLiiga48102232820
2021-22Finland U20 (all)WJC-20 Cancelled210164
2021-22Finland U20 (all)International-Jr925718
2021-22Finland U20WJC-20706612
2020-21KärpätLiiga1504432
2020-21Kärpät U20U20 SM-sarja613400
2020-21Finland U20WJC-20726846
  • Compete/Consistency: 80
  • Defensive Zone Starts: 80
  • Hockey IQ: 80
  • Penalty Kill: 80
  • Power Play: 80
  • Physicality: 60
  • Puck Moving/Passing: 80
  • Shot: 60
  • Skating: 80

Report #1

Apr. 2, 2022 (Updated Jul. 2, 2022)
Position scouted: Right Defense
Age when scouted: 20
C+
P3
Projection: Third Pair
Trending: Up
Easy to identify his element and potential upside for the NHL game. Solid skater.
A transitional 'D' who can QB the PP. With the extra attacker he is very efficient with the puck and makes reliable decisions. He distributes very well. On occasion he will direct pucks on net and shows a quick, accurate release. Rarely do his shots get blocked. His overall IQ is very strong. Not the heaviest defender. He won't over power opponents along the boards or around his crease. Upside as a 4 or 5 at ES.
Stats Powered by Elite Prospects
SeasonTeamLeagueGPGAP+/-PIM
2021-22Finland U20 (all)International-Jr925718
2021-22Finland U20WJC-20706612
2021-22KärpätLiiga48102232820
2021-22Finland U20 (all)WJC-20 Cancelled210164
2020-21Finland U20WJC-20726846
2020-21KärpätLiiga1504432
2020-21Kärpät U20U20 SM-sarja613400
2019-20Finland U18 (all)International-Jr9044-2
2019-20Finland U18Hlinka Gretzky Cup303300
2019-20KärpätChampions HL402212
2019-20KärpätLiiga4316748
2019-20Kärpät U20U20 SM-sarja101110
2019-20Finland U20 (all)International-Jr9044-2
  • Compete/Consistency: 60
  • Defensive Zone Starts: 50
  • Hockey IQ: 80
  • Penalty Kill: 40
  • Power Play: 80
  • Physicality: 33
  • Puck Moving/Passing: 80
  • Shot: 70
  • Skating: 73
Weighting
  • 20%: Compete/Consistency, Hockey IQ, Skating
  • 12%: Puck Moving/Passing
  • 8%: Shot
  • 4%: Defensive Zone Starts, Offensive Zone Starts, Penalty Kill, Power Play, Physicality