Over the last three seasons, Teemu Hartikainen has scored 49 goals as a professional for KalPa of the SM-Liiga and the Oklahoma City Barons of the AHL. Among players under contract to the Edmonton Oilers, this ranks third behind Alexandre Giroux's 142 goals and Linus Omark's 60 goals.
Even before trading Dustin Penner and his 70 goals over the last three seasons, the Oilers had a dearth of goal-scorers in the organization. Although Hartikainen's goals have come in the Finnish league and the North American minor league, he has demonstrated a capacity for scoring goals, mostly based on shot location, something desperately needed on the NHL club.
If Hartikainen stays with the Oilers through the end of the season and manages to score a handful of goals in the Oilers last twelve games, he may play himself onto the 2011-2012 roster, supplanting J.F. Jacques.
The Oilers have struggled to ice a bottom line capable of avoiding the steamroller since Kyle Brodziak was dispatched, but a bottom line of Hartikainen - Colin Fraser - Liam Reddox might be a first step towards a bottom line capable of outplaying other fourth lines.