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Teemu Hartikainen & the World Junior Championships

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The tournament of small sample sizes went almost as expected this season, except for the pesky Americans.  While all of the hype was focused on Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle, The Copper & Blue focused on the big Finn, Teemu Hartikainen.  You're all flabbergasted, I can tell.  I hate to base any opinions such a small sample size, as Jonathan derides in the linked post, but I think his numbers in the World Juniors are a significant addition to the other parts of the scouting report that we've already built.

 


Teemu Hartikainen

#35 / Left Wing / KalPa

6-1

201

May 3, 1990

Round 6, 2008 #163 overall

Wasama Trophy Winner, 2008-2009


 


GP G A P PPG +/- SOG S/G PCT
2009 WJC: Teemu Hartikainen 6 3 6 9 1 +4 22 3.66 13.60
2010 WJC: Teemu Hartikainen 6
4 2 6 2 -3 33 5.5 12.10
WJC Totals: Teemu Hartikainen 12 7 8 15 2 +1
55 4.58 12.72

 

Hartikainen was Finland's leading scorer and +/- leader over the two year span.  In 2010, it seemed that Hartikainen was the only Finn with the stature and physical skills to play against the Americans and the Canadians.  And though his footspeed continues to get attention, he didn't look out of place in any of the games against the big three countries.  He was strong on the forecheck and his open ice game seemed to match the pace of his opponents.  He certainly gained confidence from the tournament:

C&B:  You seemed to play a very physical game in your own end, in front of the net and on the forecheck.  Were you comfortable with the style of the North American game?

Teemu Hartikainen:  I liked that style in the tournament. It was very physical tournament and every game was really hard on me because I played so many minutes, but I saw that I can play well there with my strength.

Johan has implored Hartikainen to come to the AHL next year to continue his development. After seeing him in the World Juniors, I think that Hartikainen would be able to compete on this continent as well.  He's been on fire since the military commitment ended - if he keeps this pace up and KalPa makes it deep into the SM-Liiga playoffs, it might be time to make the jump.