Columbus Blue Jackets second round pick Alexandre Texier has signed with Finnish Liiga club KalPa today. There was much debate on whether he would be playing in Finland or coming to North America to play in the CHL next season. With that, Texier has decided to continue his development at the professional level with KalPa.
Alexandre Texier to Continue Career with KalPa in Liiga
Texier was a relative unknown when coming into the draft, with his draft rankings varying drastically. Some scouting reports had him as a possible first round surprise, while others had him going around 100th overall. Ultimately, Jarmo Kekalainen and Co. opted to trade back into the second round to draft Texier with the 45th overall pick.
happy and excited to be part of @KalPa_Hockey. I would like to thank my parents, agent, coaches, and friends for help and support! 😁
— Alexandre Texier (@atexier99) July 19, 2017
Texier, 17, played professionally in the French league last season for Grenoble. In 40 games Texier was able to score 10 goals and nine assists against grown men. And while this should be taken with a grain of salt, due to the competition level, it is impressive nonetheless.
Signing with KalPa was an intelligent and mature decision for Texier to continue his development. He will reap the benefits of continuing to play against men, but this time around in a league that is well-know for its quality and ability to show how good a player really is.
The other major benefit, and one the Blue Jackets will be reaping, is that any doubts or gray areas they may have in their scouting reports will be able to be filled in. Playing in a much faster, much more skilled league will show the strengths and weaknesses of Texier in a much brighter light.
Texier will be stepping into a KalPa squad that went 37-13-10 last season. They have proven to be a quality team, having not had a losing season since 2013-14. KalPa is coached by Pekka Virta, who has been in charge since the 2014-15 season.