LA Kings: Three young LHD to target on St. Louis Blues

(Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
(Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images) /
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LA Kings Niko Mikkola
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Niko Mikkola

Niko Mikkola was ready to be promoted to the NHL for regular time, but the acquisition and eventual extension of Marco Scandella have left his future with the Blues uncertain. The 24-year-old was drafted in the fifth round of the 2015 NHL Draft. He stands at a lean 6-foot-4, 185 pounds and could stand to add more muscle to his frame.

The Finnish blueliner came over to the San Antonio Rampage of the AHL for the 2018-2019 season and scored two goals with seven assists in 70 games. He played in five games for the Blues this year, tallying one assist in limited playing time, before returning to San Antonio.

With the Rampage, Mikkola increased his offensive production, scoring two goals with 12 assists for 14 points. He’s an excellent skater, especially for a guy his size. A two-way defender who can play a 200-foot game, Mikkola is a puck-moving defender that also brings a physical element to his game. He is under team control for another two years before hitting restricted free agency.