WJC: Team Finland 2019 U20 WJC Roster Talk

Discussion in 'International Tournaments' started by ChicagoBullsFan, Jan 2, 2018.

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  1. ChicagoBullsFan

    ChicagoBullsFan Registered User

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    This years ( 2018) world juniors was second straight fiasco for Team Finland.
    When overhyped Finnish U20 team lost quarterfinal game vs Czech's in shootout contest.

    Let's take a early look on 2019 U20 team Finland.

    1st line Vesalainen Ikonen Nyman
    Vaakanainen Jokiharju.

    2nd line Heponiemi Kotkaniemi Nordgren
    Isiguzo Honka

    3rd line Ylönen Kupari Nevasaari
    Utunen E Räsänen.

    4th line Virtanen Talvitie Engberg.
    13th forward Kaapo Kakko / Sampo Ranta /Matias Maccelli / Samuel Salonen / Leevi Aaltonen / Lauri Pajuniemi / Aatu Luusuaniemi ( depending injuries).
    7th dman Mikko Kokkonen / Jasper Rannisto / Eero Teräväinen / Otto Latvala / Saku Vesterinen. ( depending injuries)

    Goalies
    Annunen
    Lehtinen
    Luukkonen

    Not available and retired in U20 national team
    Miro Heiskanen ( Dallas Stars / Texas Stars)
    Eeli Tolvanen ( Nashville Predators / Milwaukee Admirals)
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2018
  2. FinPanda

    FinPanda Barkov #16

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    Conrad Mölder to the rescue? I mean he can't be worse than Luukkonen.
     
  3. Erikfromfin

    Erikfromfin Registered User

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    Off the top of my head...

    Kristian Vesalainen - Jesperi Kotkaniemi - Rasmus Kupari
    Aleksi Heponiemi - Joni Ikonen - Jesse Ylönen
    Kaapo Kakko - Aarne Talvitie - Niklas Nordgren
    Sampo Ranta - Santeri Virtanen - Sami Moilanen
    Linus Nyman

    Urho Vaakanainen - Henri Jokiharju
    Oskari Laaksonen - Anttoni Honka
    Toni Utunen - Eemeli Räsänen
    Saku Vesterinen

    Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen
    Justus Annunen
    Lassi Lehtinen
     
  4. TheFinnishTrap

    TheFinnishTrap Registered User

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    Defense will take a pretty big hit, although it will be compensated by having many experienced D+2 players. Vaakanainen-Jokiharju-Räsänen form a not-hopeless basis, and Honka is kind of a wild card. Offense looks a bit better at this point. Kakko looks like a top prospect, and Nordgren is very interesting as well. Add Ylönen and Kotkaniemi and the offense looks a lot deeper. I'm cautiously excited.
     
  5. ChicagoBullsFan

    ChicagoBullsFan Registered User

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    It would be jackpot for Finland if Heiskanen could come and finish his career to medal in junior national team.
    Jere Lehtinen has excellent contacts to Dallas and Jere is probably one of the most respected Dallas Stars icons.
    So perhaps Jere can talk to Jim Nill and at least try to get Heiskanen on the team.
     
  6. Hokinaittii

    Hokinaittii Registered User

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    Another tournament with NA rink incoming...

    Seems like the offence might have slightly better depth but without an elite guy like Tolvanen in it other than Kakko who is most likely way too young to dominate there at 17. Defence takes a big hit but after seeing how our strong D on paper couldn't achieve anything this year, I'm optimistic for something to come out of this tournament.
     
  7. BB88

    BB88 Registered User

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    So it's in NHL rink, let's just skip it.

    It will end up like this again.
     
  8. JJTT

    JJTT Registered User

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    We will also likely sent a team full of midgets too, NA ice + small players who have only played in Europe is not really a good starting point.

    From the top guys only Kotkaniemi, Virtanen and Vesalainen are big, rest are 183cm or under.
     
  9. migi

    migi Registered User

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    That OP team looks pretty bad. There is no guarantee that Kotkaniemi and Kupari take next steps and they need to be big contributors if Finland wants to success. Heponiemi and Vesalainen cant carry a team, those two play good with other good players.

    Again there is potential but small rink problems comes through again and other countries will have very good teams again.
     
  10. HockeyHistorian

    HockeyHistorian Registered User

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    Vesalainen - Ikonen - Heponiemi
    Kotkaniemi - Kupari - Nordgren
    Nyman - Talvitie - Ylönen
    Koskenkorva - Virtanen - S. Moilanen
    Kakko

    Vaakanainen - Jokiharju
    Utunen - E. Räsänen
    Salmela - Honka
    Vesterinen

    Luukkonen
    Lehtinen

    I think this group could go far if they click. Talvitie should wear the C.
     
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  11. Koijari

    Koijari #29

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    This team + NA rink; looking forward to anothern QF exit
     
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  12. HockeyHistorian

    HockeyHistorian Registered User

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    Perhaps... However, Finland has had better teams on paper for the last two years, but Finland has almost always played better as clear underdogs.
     
  13. wirelessflyingcord

    wirelessflyingcord An Oxymoron

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    I think the better term is overachieving (2014 would be a good example). The underdog status doesn't help if you're still badly coached and playing badly.
     
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  14. FinPanda

    FinPanda Barkov #16

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    You could at least add a prefix to this so it's easier to find.
     
  15. LeafChief

    LeafChief Registered User

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    E. Rasanen!!!
     
  16. MattiasSnall

    MattiasSnall Registered User

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    Now when this season ended with another disappointing exit for one of our national teams, let’s look forward to the next championship which will be the 2019 U20 WJC. Another great generation with 2017 U18 silver medalists and 2018 U18 gold medalists. I listed 40 players who I believe have a good chance of making the team(I assume that Tolvanen and Heiskanen are playing in the NHL):
    FW:
    Vesalainen
    Heponiemi
    Ikonen
    Kupari
    Kotkaniemi
    S.Moilanen
    Nordgren
    Nyman
    Kakko
    Talvitie
    Ylönen
    Virtanen
    Tanus
    Pajuniemi
    Ranta
    Lundell
    Petman
    Hirvonen
    Nikkanen
    Maccelli
    Engberg
    Luusuaniemi
    D:
    Jokiharju
    Vaakanainen
    Räsänen
    Honka
    Utunen
    Kokkonen
    Laaksonen
    Teräväinen
    Salmela
    Iziguzo
    Anttalainen
    Vesterinen
    Latvala

    G:
    Luukkonen
    Annunen
    Lehtinen
    Mäkiniemi
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2018
  17. ChicagoBullsFan

    ChicagoBullsFan Registered User

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    If 2019 world juniors start now Finland's team could look like this.

    1st line Vesalainen Ikonen Nyman.
    Vaakanainen Jokiharju

    2nd line Nordgren Kotkaniemi Kakko.
    Utunen A Honka

    3rd line Heponiemi Kupari Ylönen
    E Teräväinen E Räsänen

    4th line Engberg Talvitie Moilanen.

    7th Dman Saku Vesterinen / Otto Latvala / Oskari Laaksonen ( depending injuries etc)
    13th forward Santeri Virtanen / Anton Lundell / Lauri Kulmala / Leevi Aaltonen ( depending injuries etc)

    Goalies
    Luukkonen
    Annunen
    Mölder

    Other potential candidates
    Lauri Pajuniemi
    Aatu Luusuaniemi
    Santeri Salmela
    Sampo Ranta
    Peetro Seppälä
    Bernard Isiguzo

    Graduated from juniors and not available
    Miro Heiskanen
    Eeli Tolvanen

    Remember this is only speculation so no need to rip your ass off.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2018
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  18. MattiasSnall

    MattiasSnall Registered User

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    Seems pretty much the same as I was thinking, good options up front, good enough defenseman, and potentially 2 good goalkeepers fighting for the number one spot, let’s see after the summer how these guys have developed.
     
  19. FinPanda

    FinPanda Barkov #16

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    I would expect Lehtinen to be one of the three goalies.
     
  20. Tormentor

    Tormentor Registered User

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    *Bolded players were at U20 test camp in Vierumäki.

    ------------------------NHL/AHL---------------------------
    Kristian Vesalainen (-99) - Eeli Tolvanen (-99)
    Miro Heiskanen (-99)

    --------------------Top Candidates------------------------
    Linus Nyman (-99) - Jesperi Kotkaniemi (-00) - Niklas Nordgren (-00)
    Aleksi Heponiemi (-99) - Joni Ikonen (-99) - Kaapo Kakko (-01)
    Aarne Talvitie (-99)
    - Rasmus Kupari (-00) - Jesse Ylönen (-99)
    Teemu Engberg (-99)
    - Santeri Virtanen (-99) - Sampo Ranta (-00)
    Sami Moilanen (-99)


    Urho Vaakanainen (-99) - Henri Jokiharju (-99)
    Eemeli Räsänen (-99) - Anttoni Honka (-00)
    Joona Riekkinen (-99)
    - Oskari Laaksonen (-99)
    Santeri Salmela (-00)


    Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen (-99)
    Lassi Lehtinen (-99)
    Justus Annunen (-00)


    -------------------Other Candidates-----------------------
    Erkka Seppälä (-99) - Anton Lundell (-01) - Lauri Pajuniemi (-99)
    Aleksi Klemetti (-99)
    - Olli Maansaari (-99) - Janne Jokinen (-99)
    Eetu Päkkilä (-99) - Jesse Koskenkorva (-99) - Aatu Luusuaniemi (-99)
    Matias Maccelli (-00) - Henri Nikkanen (-01) - Antti Saarela (-01)
    Ville Petman (-00)

    Eero Teräväinen (-99) - Saku Vesterinen (-99)
    Toni Utunen (-00)
    - Bernard Isiguzo (-99)
    Aleksi Anttalainen (-99)
    - Otto Latvala (-99)
    Olli Kaskinen (-99)

    Filip Lindberg (-99)
    Eetu Mäkiniemi (-99)
    Conrad Mölder (-99)
     
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  21. FinPanda

    FinPanda Barkov #16

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    That first team looks excellent even without Heiskanen/Vesalainen/Tolvanen.
     
  22. LeafChief

    LeafChief Registered User

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    Does Eemeli Rasanen moving to the KHL hurt or hep his chances of making this squad?
     
  23. Sanf

    Sanf Registered User

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    Goalies are interesting. Luukkonen has so much raw talent, but the development has been slow IMO. And he was "outplayed" by many other young Mestis goalies this season. I still believe that he may make the best career of the bunch, but can he be challenged for next year. More of project goalie. Is he chosen only by his potential to be the starter?

    Lehtinen was surprisingly good in Mestis playoffs. Solid and calm. Still the quality of shooters does raise signicantly going to Liiga. Can challenge Luukkonen.

    Lindberg did a good choice IMO going to NCAA. It has been good road to pro career historically (Wallinheimo, Tarkki, Helanen (what if)..) and recently (Olkinuora, Tirronen, Kaskisuo...). If I thik of the similar level of talent it is amazing how many of the NCAA goalies has became solid pros.
     
  24. FinPanda

    FinPanda Barkov #16

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    He should be a lock anyway, doesn't really matter.


    I think Lehtinen could be our starter.. He had very impressive season.
     
  25. Tormentor

    Tormentor Registered User

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    In general 18 year-old netminders have a harder time at World Juniors than those that are 19, that extra year of development seems to make a big difference in many cases. Joni Ortio was a perfect example of this; he struggled as a 18 year-old, a lot more than Luukkonen did, but a year later he redeemed himself and had a good tournament.

    Luukkonen didn't display the same kind of growth in his game during the second half of the season as Lehtinen did, but there was a pretty good reason for it. Luukkonen simply wasn't healthy for half the time and only played in 6 Mestis games after the World Juniors.

    National team coaches have preferred Luukkonen over Lehtinen for two years now, so at this point it would be bit of a stretch to say that he isn't the odds on favourite to be the starter next season as well. That being said, it's interesting to see how the summer goes for these guys and how they perform at the first big U20 event of the season in early August. There's always room for surprises.

    Lindberg played well with the U19 national team in February and April, he seems to be quite a promising netminder. Not the biggest goalie out there, but has some similarities with Saros in how quick and agile he is. BTW, game videos from those two tournaments can still be found from HokejkaTV.
     

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