He’s not flashy. He’s never going to score 50 goals or 100 points. Heck, he may not even ever score 20 goals or reach 40 points. But the 48 games of Juho Lammikko this year suggest he may be a piece worth holding on to for the Vancouver Canucks.
For the first couple months of the season, Lammikko looked to be just another run of the mill bottom six forward, not much different than the likes of Justin Dowling, Travis Boyd, Jayce Hawryluk and so on.
Acquired with Noah Juulsen from Florida in exchange for Olli Juolevi, in his first 26 games, Lammikko had just one goal and one assist. He was part of the Canucks horrendous penalty kill and didn’t make up for it by being elite defensively or in the dot.
But over his last 22 games, Lammiko has five goals and 10 points. He’s settled into a role on the Motto line with Tyler Motte and Matthew Highmore and has shown flashes of offensive potential. He was dynamic in the Canucks win over the Seattle Kraken last week, assisting on a pair of goals and creating opportunities for both himself and others throughout the game.
Lammiklo is going to need a new contract after the year, but he’s not going to cost the Canucks much in terms of a cap hit. Plus he just turned 26-years old, so he’s a good fit for the age the Canucks are trying to build around.
As evidenced throughout the league, a competent bottom six is integral to having a complete team. It’s something that has plagued the Canucks for years, with either AHL-caliber players or overpaid players filling in the bottom six.
But the likes of Lammikko, Highmore and Motte is what the Canucks need more of. It’s also proof that you can have a good fourth line for roughly three to three million dollars total, rather than paying a bunch of guys over three million to not produce.
Lammikko isn’t a player you label as untouchable by any means, but he’s the type of guy worth keeping. The hope is that he’ll continue to progress in the faceoff dot, where he’s up to 51.1 %. He also 29 blocked shots, 53 hits and just four giveaways. Ultimately, Lammikko is the type of player you love on the fourth line and there really isn’t much reason to not bring him back and keep him around.