No. 2 – D Olli Juolevi (TPS Turku, Liiga)
On Thursday, I was pondering which prospects really stood out this week. I was a little stumped because Dahlen and Pettersson were the only standout performances at this point. Utica had not played Laval yet and it was starting to look like a quieter week for Canucks prospects.
More from The Canuck Way
- Which team won the Bo Horvat trade?
- What to expect from newcomers Anthony Beauvillier, Aatu Räty
- Back to the future: How the skate uniforms became a regular Canucks’ feature night
- Canucks kick off 2023 with disappointing 6-2 loss to Islanders
- 2nd period penalty trouble sinks Canucks in 4-2 loss against Winnipeg
TPS Turku played two games this week, winning both contests against Ilves and Tappara. Olli Juolevi did not get any points in the first game, but what he did in the second game alleviated any concerns I had for this week’s prospect performances.
Juolevi collected three assists, one on the power play and two at even strength. TPS defeated Tappara 3-2 in the effort. Juolevi touched every single goal for his team and helped push his team to second overall in the Liiga standings. TPS were sitting behind Tappara and this win allowed them to pass.
That important game took place yesterday morning. Juolevi now has 12 points in 14 games this season, good for 11th among all defencemen in Liiga, according to Elite Prospects. For those also following 2017 3rd overall selection, Miro Heiskanen, Juolevi has pulled ahead of him by one point.
Why am I talking about Heiskanen?
Everyone above these defencemen have played up to 12 more games than them. It is also interesting to see where they stand among defencemen under 20 years of age. I’ll let Ryan Biech explain this one:
The reason I bring up Heiskanen is the fact that these young defencemen will make up the top pairing for Finland at the 2018 World Junior Championships. Juolevi and Heiskanen will be on a path of redemption. Last year’s World Junior Championships were a disaster that nearly relegated Finland from this year’s main tournament. I think Finland will look very different from last year, becoming a force to be reckoned with.