Kaspars Astašenko started to play hockey professionally in 1991 with Dinamo Riga and moved to CSKA Moskva in 1995. In 1999, he was drafted 127th overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning, but he only played 23 games with them over two seasons in NHL. During his two seasons stay with Tampa Bay, Astašenko played mostly with their minor league affiliate, the Detroit Viper in the IHL and he played from 2001-03 with the Lowell Lock Monsters in the AHL. In 2003, he moved back to Europe, playing with Ilves Tampere (2003-04), HPK Hämeenlinna (2005-06), Bratislava Slovan (2006-07) and Ritten Renon (2007-09), before finishing his hockey career with the Belfast Giants in 2010-11. Internationally, Astašenko represented Latvia at the 1994 and 1995 World Junior Championships, at the 2002 Olympic Games and at the 2001 and 2006 World Championships. During his playing career, he developed a drug habit, and was arrested in 2003 for heroin possession, and his drug problems worsened after his retirement from sport. Astašenko died in November 2012 from an apparent drug overdose, at only 37-years-old.