The Toronto Maple Leafs acquired the former first-round pick of the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2014 as part of the second Phil Kessel trade.
Kapanen spent five seasons in the Leafs organization. His best season with the Leafs was during the 2018-19 season when he registered 20 goals and 24 assists for 44 points in 78 games. (Stats from hockey-reference.com)
The 27-year-old Kapanen, now with the St. Louis Blues, commented on the incident , took responsibility and apologized.
Former Toronto Maple Leafs Forward Facing Drunk Driving Charge
According to Yle Urheilu’s report, Drunken driving is aggravated if the driver has a blood alcohol content of at least 1.2 mg/ml or has at least 0.53 milligrams of alcohol per liter of exhaled air during or after driving.
For milder drunken driving, the limit is 0.5 per mil or 0.22 milligrams. You are also guilty of aggravated drunken driving if you have used, for example, narcotic substances in such a way that your ability to drive has deteriorated considerably, and the circumstances are such that the offence is likely to endanger the safety of another person.
The case has been brought before the North Savo District Court on 23 August, and the case is scheduled to be heard in the District Court in February 2024. St. Louis GM Doug Armstrong said the club has been in contact with Kapanen and his agent.
Kapanen along with similarly paid and talented teammate Andreas Johnsson was a great example of the kind of player the Leafs had to cut in order to fit into their Core Four studs and duds salary cap approach.
Fortunately for the Toronto Maple Leafs, neither player ended up having a very good career after leaving Toronto and the Leafs actually looked pretty smart signing them to lengthy contracts, even though at the time I think most people were sad to see them go.
Kapanen’s previously mentioned career high was promising, but he has failed to match that ever since.
His best season since leaving the Toronto Maple Leafs amounted to 11 goals and 32 points, and it turned out that letting him go was probably a wise move.
Hopefully, this will be a lesson learned for Kapanen, and he will get the help if he needs it, so that something like this doesn’t happen again. Next time, it could cost him or someone else their life.