Kuokkanen has 62 points in 60 games playing for the London Knights this year, and he’s eligible to join the AHL Charlotte Checkers following the conclusion of his season in the OHL.
The press release from the team is below:
‘CANES AGREE TO TERMS WITH KUOKKANEN
Forward averaging more than a point a game in OHL this season
Ron Francis, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has agreed to terms with forward Janne Kuokkanen (YAN-eh KWOH-kahn-ehn) on a three-year, entry-level contract. On the NHL level, the deal will pay Kuokkanen $700,000 in 2017-18, $750,000 in 2018-19, and $800,000 in 2019-20. On the American Hockey League (AHL) level, he will be paid $70,000 per season, and Kuokkanen receives a signing bonus of $277,500.
“Janne was outstanding in our rookie tournament in Traverse City in September, and stayed in North America to continue his development in the Ontario Hockey League,” said Francis. “He’s a smart, skilled forward and we look forward to the start of his professional career.”
Kuokkanen, 18, totaled 26 goals and 36 assists (62 points) and a plus-23 rating, appearing in 60 of 68 regular-season games for London of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) in 2016-17. The Oulusalo, Finland, native was tied for third among Knights skaters in goals and fourth on the team in scoring and had 16 points (7g, 9a) on the power-play for London. The Knights host the Windsor Spitfires in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series on Friday.
Carolina’s second-round selection, 43rd overall, in the 2016 NHL Draft, Kuokkanen has represented Finland in a number of international tournaments, including the 2017 World Junior Championship, the 2016 U18 World Junior Championship and the 2014 U-17 World Hockey Challenge. Prior to joining London, he was a product of the Karpat (Liiga) development system, where he was teammates with Hurricanes forward Sebastian Aho.