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Photo Credit: Liiga

CanucksArmy’s 2018 “Midterm” Prospect Rankings: #3 Olli Juolevi

Rounding out our top three prospects in the organization is 2016 draft pick Olli Juolevi.

There is plenty to discuss and dissect about the Finnish defenceman, and we will below, but there is little doubt that he is the organization’s top defensive prospect and should be a part of this team for quite a few years ahead.

He made his way to Finland this past season and could push for a roster spot as early as next season. So, let’s dive in and take a look at Olli Juolevi.

Numbers:

Olli Juolevi 2017-18 Liiga Statistics

GP G A P S S% CF%
38 7 12 19 114 6.1% 53.6%

Averaging 17:52 in ice time per game, Olli Juolevi was able to post 0.5 PPG as a rookie. That clip allowed him to finish four in voting for Liiga Rookie of the year, despite only playing in 2/3 of the season for TPS. His shot rates of 3.0 SH/PG is encouraging for any player but particularly noteworthy for a defenceman, let alone a rookie.

He followed that up with two goals and five assists in the postseason in eleven games, which was seventh among all defencemen in Liiga, despite playing the fewest games of that top twelve. His shot rate increased to 4.18 SH/PG in the post-season in large part to increased ice-time (22:57) and power-play time in the playoffs.

pGPS:

Based on pGPS, an impressive 56.7% of his statistical cohort went on to become NHL regulars with an expected production of 45.9 points at their peak. With that said, there is only the one successful player (Joni Pitkanen) out of the three matches, which makes this number potentially misleading as the cohort is small. We’ll talk about it below but Juolevi’s different path this season is a primary reason for the lower (n) and thus should be taken as just a small layer of analysis.

That dip last season was due to him producing the same amount of points as he did in his draft year. The increase is due to the smaller sample size in Liiga but still encouraging and fair to suggest that he is trending back to where he was previously.

Scouting Report

Whenever anyone discusses Juolevi, there are a few things that need to broaching before you really dive in — almost a disclaimer on how to properly evaluate him as a prospect. Firstly, Juolevi will be an NHL player for an extended period for the Canucks. His smarts, awareness, puck movement and distribution skills will allow him to be effective at the NHL level and carve out a long career.

With that out of the way, the Canucks selecting Juolevi over some other players is not a way to accurately analyze him as a player. The organization felt he was the best player available. It is not Juolevi’s fault that happened nor should it garner consideration when evaluating him. The argument can be made the Canucks should’ve chosen Mikhail Sergachev, Jacob Chychrun, and Charlie McAvoy (two of which CanucksArmy had ranked higher). Still, they felt that Juolevi was better. The expedited timeline of those other three has cast a more massive cloud over the pick.

With that out of the way, let’s look at the Canucks prospect’s game and this season in particular.

The 20-year-old defenceman — Juolevi’s age is an essential aspect in allowing time before fully saying the Canucks made the wrong selection — had an up and down season in Liiga but his work overall can be classified as a successful step forward in his development. He started the season a little rough:

When he first arrived in Finland, there was some obvious rust and timidness to his game, and it showed when watching him and then in the event tracker above. In his first ten games with TPS Turku, Juolevi was on the ice for ten 5v5 goals against. He was on the ice for 15 more 5v5 goals against over the course of the other 28 regular season games while contributing offensively. There was a dip in production upon his return from the World Juniors, that saw him sit out a couple of games. But he closed out the season well and was very effective in the playoffs.

His rolling rates tell a similar story as the event tracker in that he started the season slowly but by the twenty game mark had hit the ground running. That dip occurs, but he starts to trend back upwards towards the conclusion of the season and into the playoffs.

From a qualitative standpoint, and I mentioned this when looking at the data above, is that Juolevi started the season behind, worked himself out of it, played well at the WJHC, had another dip, and then worked back out of it. The first part of his season was a combination of things including being timid on the ice, some rust to his game, and being over-matched regarding strength.

When he reached the ten game mark, he was being more aggressive with his engagements and stick work. He was smartly reading oncoming opponents with the puck and using his skill set to guide them into low danger situations. There was some still some struggles to contain a few players, which isn’t uncommon given he was a teenager in a professional league, but he was putting himself in situations where he wasn’t getting burned.

Juolevi was able to move the puck out of the zone very well and join the rush – which coincided with his uptick in offence and shot rates.

There is little doubt that he will need to get stronger in his upper body to handle NHL players and the rigours of a full season in the NHL.

Offensively, it would be ideal for Juolevi to improve his shot as well. He regularly relies on his wrist shot (with a leg kick) to get pucks to the net. He is very effective at getting the puck past the first opponent and near the net, but adding a slap-shot to the arsenal will allow Juolevi to get more opportunities at 5v5 and PP to generate offence. That will ideally come with the added strength.

The Helsinki native still has a penchant for moving the puck out of his zone effectively. There is little doubt that is one of the strengths of his game. His performance at this past World Juniors, particularly Finland’s final game, was a tease of why the Canucks thought he was the best player available.

It’s fair to say that Juolevi didn’t take a step forward in his development in his draft plus one season with the London Knights but has reset the ship with his draft plus two season this past year with TPS Turku. There was some encouraging signs about his play and then some things to keep an eye on going forward. Some of those issues will be fixed with some more development as a player and as a young man.

The organization will likely give Juolevi every chance to make the Canucks out of camp but he likely ends up in Utica to start next season, which isn’t a bad thing. He will be able to be the number one guy for the Comets and be supported by some veteran prospects, like Ashton Sautner or Evan McEneny, and AHL vets, like Jamie Sifers. It will allow Juolevi to ease into the AHL and then go from there.

That ultimately is the best course for a 20-year-old defenceman who is still rounding out his entire game. After that, I’d expect the former fifth overall pick to make his way onto the Canucks sooner rather than later. It’s just a matter of where his ceiling will take him.

  • NeverWas

    Elder 2.0 would be nice… sounds like he’s going to be a top 4 D no matter What, most likely in that 2 or 3 spot which is fine. Projecting/Drafting high-end defensivemen is difficult so as long as they can grab another gooder this draft and the rest keep progressing the backend should be ok even if they have to supplement it with some FA acquisitions. Demko pettersen round out the top 2! No surprises there…

    • argoleas

      Edler 2.0 or Ohlund 2.0, take your pick. What I see him being is a top-notch minute-munching defender that will play in all situations against opponents’ top lines. He will frustrate opponent rushes to hell, and has an excellent outlet pass to quickly transition to our forwards. He could run a PP. Will get Edler-level of points so 30-50, depending on how stacked Canucks are on the forward lines.

  • apr

    I really think he profiles to Jacob Trouba, both 6’3 puck moving defenseman getting 30-35 points a year. I see nothing wrong with that at all. I think many would prefer Trouba over Tkachuk, just need to give OJ a year or two.

    • Dirk22

      If Juolevi ends up as good as Trouba you’d see nothing wrong with it? Either you’re severely underestimating Trouba who is one of the best young defenders in the game or severely overestimating Juolevi. If Juolevi does end up as good as Trouba that would be monumental.

      • apr

        Trouba’s point totals have been 29, 22, 21, 33, 24; granted he did not play full seasons in most of those years. Ben Hutton got 25 points in his first year, and Troy Stecher 24. The past two years have been an absolute train wreck for Stecher and Hutton’s numbers (and pretty much the whole team). But given Juolevi’s draft status, I think its not completely unreasonable that he hits those totals.

        • Dirk22

          I don’t think it’s unreasonable either that he hits those totals. I do think it would be a fairly optimistic projection to see him become a player as good as Trouba though. Not totally unrealistic, just optimistic. We’re talking about a defencemen about to sign for around $6 mill/year. There’s not many defencemen in the league 24 and under who are as good as Trouba as an all around defencemen.

          • apr

            I agree that Trouba is a really good young D. It just interesting to read all these assessments on Hughes, Boqvist, Bouchard, Dobson, Smith, but somehow it would be a disappointment if they put of the same numbers as Trouba has to start his career, even though he is a fine young D about to make loads of $$$$.

          • Dirk22

            I think if any of those defencemen become as good as Trouba that would be a huge win. Chances are, most of them will get nowhere close.

            Again I think you’re underestimating him based on his point totals.

          • Cageyvet

            Totally agree, watching Trouba a lot more due to the playoffs, he’s a hell of a player and points don’t begin to tell the story. Give me 4 of him on the blueline and we’re laughing.

          • TD

            Dirk22, your comments and analysis are what I want the articles to be about. These articles scare me because they seem to ignore the defensive side of being a defenseman. All the comments are about how dynamic Hughes and Boqvist are. Dobson and Bouchard are a tier back because they are not as dynamic offensively. They need to play defence as well. How are they defensively? Can they match up against the big centres in the corners and in front of their net. Trouba is more than his points, he is a good defenceman in his own end. Look at Jordan Subban, very dynamic offensively but a train wreck in his own end. First pairing, even top 4 d men are very good in their own end, but it is never covered off in any of the prospect articles. The writers love Tanev and state he’s our best d man, but his qualities that make him good get no play in the prospect articles.

          • apr

            His analytics were fine, but he doesn’t play hard enough on his man or the puck. If he’s not getting points, nor being hard on his check – he’s totally in limbo. The mistake was paying him right away instead of making him earn it over a few years.

  • Holmes

    Think it’s reasonable to assume he will be a good player for a long time for the Canucks. Quant stuff aside, Sami Salo’s comments perplex me about Juolevi. Don’t recall verbatim what they were. But directionally, Salo seemed to be pretty hard on the kid. What’s lacking though is context on Salo as a talent evaluator and mentor. Is he a natural hard ass, and he’s trying to push the right buttons for Juolevi. Or does Juolevi have Virtanen-type issues where he needs a smack to get him headed in the right direction? Underwhelming pick so far with a decent shot to work out well in the long term

    • TD

      Salo commented about his strength and conditioning, but I think the comments were taken out of context as he also said he improved over the season and carried the team on his shoulders during the playoffs as their best player.

      My take on the strength and conditioning comment based on Salo’s overall comments, was that Salo knows that the NHL is a much harder league to compete in than the OHL and Liiga. Juolevi needs to become stronger and be in better shape to survive the bigger players and the grind of an NHL season. Those comments probably apply to almost every kid in junior and in many of the European leagues which are less physical and play a shorter season.

      • argoleas

        An additional context for Salo’s comments may be his good read on Juolevi, which is that he tends to lose focus in the daily grind of a season, which may lead him to underestimate the level of commitment it takes to handle a 82 grind. Juolevi will learn this sooner or later, but Salo is trying to leave an impression so deep, it will scar(e) Juolevi into putting in the work now instead of being surprised later. In other words, Juolevi’s challenge is what you typically have with teenagers that were superstars in their own leagues. Salo worked hard to strip off that bark of entitlement. We will see if it worked.

        • Holmes

          Think that’s a fair assessment, and hoping it turns out to be right. There’s an interview with Salo in the Province today. His comments seem cryptic. Talks about OJ’s body language on the ice and how he looks disinterested. He’s using a filter too, which concerns the crap out of me. OJ just cannot be a complementary piece – he has to be a big-time player or the rebuild lags. Hugely important prospect

          • argoleas

            Just read that piece in TP. The part about body language is interesting, but that may be more of appearance. Results should alone speak to level of interest. Otherwise, it is exactly what I picked up from Salo and others before: Juolevi will be a very good NHLer if he wants to be. Maybe even great. Maybe even exceptional. But to have a shot at reaching those lofty heights, he will need to channel his inner Horvat.

            And yes, aside from Demko, Juolevi must be that piece that is not just great, but pivotal. He HAS to emerge as the anchor of this defense in the next 3 yrs, as Edler slowly exits the stage. It is not an understatement that the entire Canucks rebuild hinges on this. Now, this may be slightly modified should they draft another Dman in the 7th, but if it is someone like Hughes or Boqvist, they will be offensive spears, not in a 1st pair shutdown mode. Someone like Dobson, and likely Bouchard could be Juolevi 2.0.

          • TD

            Juolevi and the d they draft at 7 both have to hit. With the wingers in the line up and the prospects, some can miss. Dahlen and Lind miss, but Gadjovich and Palmu become great wingers etc and the Canucks could still have a good forward Corp. They need Juolevi and this other pick to hit cause there is nobody else that projects as to fill out the top 4 right now.

  • Fred-65

    What’s said is true. He likely will be a NHL D and for a long time. But JB ranked him as the 5th best in the world. I think that’s what fans are upset with. I have difficulty getting over that because we missed an opportunity. If you want to be great you can’t miss an opportunity. One of the Hunters brother said shortly after the draft they though he’d be a 3-4 D. That’s disappointing. It also shows up our scouts. So he’s going to be an OK defenseman whoopy doo, frankly we already have a few of those already. If OJ is ranked as our third best prospect …. guys we have trouble

    • North Van Halen

      Love these “I recall negative things’ with no link comments. Got bored, googled Juolevi, Hunter, and Juolevi Hunter 3 or 4, got a tonne of positives. The most negative I found was, “He is a great team guy,” said Hunter. “The players on the team all love him. Vancouver has a player that will be around for a long time.”
      Dale Hunter, coach, owner, loved him.
      I mean if ya got a link to prove what you’re saying great, otherwise, I can just say I recall Hunter saying he was the next coming of Serge Savard. Awesome we got a steal!!!!

        • North Van Halen

          Well since my guess is a statement like that woulda got a little more coverage than, Fred65 quoting him on the message boards of Canucks Army. As in, had he said it like you quote, ‘he’s only going to be a 3-4 dman’ and not ‘he’s no doubt going to be a 3-4 dman with the potential for more’, we woulda got ad nauseum articles here and endless discussion on TEAM1040.
          Since this is the 1st most of us have heard of this, my guess is you either misheard, misremember or you like to feed the trolls.

    • DJ_44

      If OJ is ranked as our third best prospect …. guys we have trouble

      There’s some logic for ya. Because we have two prospects that are ranked higher…. who are, as we know, potential elite (or better) goaltender and center, were are in trouble?

      I suspect Juolevi will be, as Ryan indicated somewhere in the 2-4 range. I would probably classify Sergachev, Chychrun, or McAvoy in the same range, or as you refer to them: “OK” d-men.

      • argoleas

        Some Dmen take longer. Some Dmen superstars took longer. We all need to relax and reevaluate where Juolevi, MacAvoy, Sergachev, and Chychrun are at 24.

        And that means I will in no way be disappointed if Juolevi ends up starting in Utica, which I find likely not due to him not being ready, but to the bottleneck in front of him on LD. Juolevi’s job is to come to TC and show he belongs in the NHL right away.

        • DeL

          I think next year in Utica is a good place for him to acclimatize to the N. American game. Smaller rink bigger more physical faster opponents longer season. If he keeps trending upward and is in the NHL at 22 as one of your top four that is a good pick

    • Killer Marmot

      But JB ranked him as the 5th best in the world. I think that’s what fans are upset with. I have difficulty getting over that because we missed an opportunity

      If you’re looking for perfection in drafting, you should cheer for a team like … okay, there is no team with a perfect drafting record. It’s a crap shoot for everyone. Even the early picks are fraught with peril.

      • North Van Halen

        You would think, considering many of the best players in Canuck history, the Sedins, Naslund, Bertuzzi were all late to develop, at least 24, that fans would understand patience is sometimes the key to not trading a future 100 point player for Alex Stojanov.
        I have no idea how Juolevi will turn out but he was the top pairing dman on a world junior & memorial cup champion at 17. Thats pretty awesome so I have no problem waiting another couple of years to see if he can become something special or just okay.

        • Dirk22

          The Sedins also won Swedish League MVP’s (like Pettersson) as 18 year olds. Naslund was also tearing it up over there as a 18-19 year old – not to mention his 24 points in 7 games at the U-20’s

          I get what you’re saying about patience but their progression as 19-20 year old prospects is nowhere close. They were dominating in pro-hockey leagues and at the World Junior stage. They didn’t just come out of the blue at age 24.

          • North Van Halen

            Fair enough but all 4 were questioned intensely about their progression, so much so, 2 were acquired in what can only be considered hugely lopsided deals and 2 were labelled ‘sisters’ and many wanted them run outta town so forgive me if I’m not ready to declare bust on the guy who was WJHC all star defensemen when he was 17.

          • DeL

            All of them were forwards. Defence is a harder position. Lots of players playing that position take a bit longer to develop. If he’s one of your top four in a couple of years (at 22)I’d say that it’s a good thing

          • Dirk22

            I’m in agreement that it’s way too early to know about Juolevi. I just think those examples aren’t good ones because those players were drafted and then excelled as prospects before they hit the NHL (like a Petersson or a Gaudette).

            Juolevi was drafted and was stagnant in his D + 1 and then was getting healthy scratched at times in his D + 2. That might not mean anything long term but it hasn’t exactly been encouraging for a 5th overall.

          • North Van Halen

            Dirk when you look for negatives they’re easy to find. This kid as a 17 year old was the #1 dman and an all star on the WJHC championship team then followed that up by being 1st pairing dman on a Memorial Cup team. Now he may have just been extraordinarily lucky with teammates but I’ll give you the list of players that have pulled off that feat at that age: Olli Joulevi.
            Developmental curves vary wildly on these guys but clearly the Canucks scouts saw that special something they didn’t see with the other guys. Probably, like Pettersson they thought his ceiling was highest regardless of what anyone else thought.
            Am I thrilled with his progress, not really. Do I believe he could still be really good, definitely, Do I think the Canucks were wrong to take him, not if they thought his ceiling was highest.

          • bobdaley44

            What I’m saying is D take longer to develop and don’t dominate in mens leagues right away. More responsibilities not to mention the physical factor. Forwards defensive play is less crucial especially on the wing as long as you can score and make plays.

    • In all fairness to Fred-65, Benning himself said leading up to the draft that there were no #1 defenders, at best a #2 defenceman. Presuming that Benning believes Juolevi is one of the guys, then Juolevi needs to fire on all cylinders to make it as a top pairing defender. Otherwise, Juolevi projects to be more of a Top 4 / middle-pairing defender.

      “I don’t know if there’s a true No. 1 defenseman,” he explained. “If you look through the league right now, there’s maybe eight or 10 No. 1 defensemen in the whole league. This defense group this year, I think they’re first pairing guys where they could be a good two. But with a No. 1 defenseman, we’re talking about a guy with size and strength, who can run a power play and can match up against the other teams’ top lines. I don’t know if there is a true No. 1 defenseman in this year’s draft.”

      https://thecanuckway.com/2016/05/03/vancouver-canucks-draft-olli-juolevi-true-no-1/

      Hopefully we find that #1 defender (Noah Dobson?) in this draft who is a good partner for Juolevi.

  • Well, I think we just have to hope for the best with Juolevi. Hope he learned from an excellent mentor in Sami Salo. Hope he takes conditioning serious. Hope is attitude is right. Hope he becomes a great Canuck.

    It’s not too late. He’s only 20 and in the 1st year of his entry level deal, so there is time. He needs to show up at training camp with a will to win.

  • TD

    Ryan, can you clarify some deployment comments I heard about Juolevi in his last year with London?

    I hear that his deployment changed from his first year. He was partnered with Bouchard to mentor him and they became the shut down pair. Juolevi was given more PK responsibilities than during his first year and less PP time that was given to Victor Mete. I heard this from several places, but can’t remember where (you may have commented on it as you write about the prospects). I guess we could question why he didn’t get the PP time, but sometimes that is a coaches decision who is more concerned with winning than players counting stats. I would argue Sutter was a better player for the Canucks this past year than the year before despite his reduced point totals. But that can be explained by Green’s deployment as a shut down centre and penalty killer vs Desjardins not giving him the same defensive responsibilities and using him as the shooter on the PP.

    I get the limitations in any models, like pGPS, in determining every factor that effects the counting stats, but interested in your knowledge about Juolevi’s deployment and thoughts about its effect on pGPS.

    • MM

      My recollection was similar – that to spread out the talent they moved him to a second line, second PP team, and PK time.
      He still scored as much as the first year. Moreover, i recall the WJC he played in his draft year, and as a 17 yr old, he was lights out awesome, to the point of me thinking at that the time that it would be awesome to get him. I think he led the tourney in points as a dman – or close to…

      I think his ceiling is still as a number one d-man – there are 62 of those in the NHL. He may never hit that, but i think the potential is there.

    • Tedchinook

      I agree that saying he regressed in his D+1 year in London is a bit harsh. Not only did his deployment change but the calibre of team went down pretty significantly too. Maintaining his point total under those circumstances seems like a pretty good thing to me.

  • wojohowitz

    Here`s the good news; CA is wrong – Juolevi is not the third best prospect in the system. If he was then the Canucks would really be years away from respectability. Instead Juolevi should not be included in the top ten. Another year in Finland and a year (at least) in the AHL and after that a long and successful (Edler like) NHL career if he grows up.

    The late season comments by Salo about conditioning is a huge red flag about maturity. CA is right about his talent and potential but the black hole the scouts can`t figure out is in the psychological profile gauging competitiveness. Chatfield is closer to the NHL.

    • Let me get this straight – the only defensive prospect in the Canucks system who is relatively likely to end up a top-4 defenceman is *years* away from the NHL, has maturity issues, and may never make it, yet the Canucks are *not* years away from respectability?

      I’m not sure how you square this circle.

      • wojohowitz

        Here`s what you see; A fifth overall pick with loads of talent and potential.

        Here`s what I see; A player dropping like a stone on the depth chart behind their top six and (7) Biega, (8) Sautner, (9) Chatfield, (10) Brisebois and (11) McEneny.

        As for top-4 defenceman; Aren`t you discounting numbers 8,9,10 and 11 – all of whom could turn into top 4 D-men.

        I reiterate what I posted; If Juolevi is their best defensive prospect then the Canucks are years away from respectability.

  • ned

    Need to swing a deal to aquire the 12th and 13th picks from the Islanders, then take whoever is available out of Kotkaniemi and Veleno and then who’s available out of Dobson and Smith. I don’t see Petterson as a center in the NHL, so I’d like to see Benning and company get creative and take one of the top centers of this draft class.

  • canuckfan

    Juolevi is learning his trade as he goes. He is just 19 of course he is immature Canucks have done things right pairing him with a mentor someone he grew up respecting and admiring. Of course this kid is learning and will keep learning. Just love the way he steps his game up in the playoffs last year with London and this year in Finland. The passes he has made that made the highlight reels are sweet. His first year in NHL will be an experience that he will learn from. Get him in a room full of high caliber prospects he will pick up his game. Edler has been great and add in Tanev he will be in good company to learn the game. I am excited for the future.

      • argoleas

        Pairing Tanev with Juolevi could be very good. Worked wonders for MacAvoy with Chara. Having a pairing mate who will keep you honest will be very helpful. Now, Juolevi will need to earn that spot, but when he does, it will be a very good step for his development. There is a reason that while most of us and media as already traded Tanev, Benning wants him around longer, perhaps all of 2018-2019. If Canucks draft another Dman with their 7th, that will probably ensure Tanev’s departure, as it is likely that pick will play in 2019.

        In any case, whereas I assume Juolevi will start in Utica, probably more due to logjam on LD, inevitable injuries mean he will probably quickly make his way back and stay permanently.

        Edler will be extended 2-3 yrs, with the idea that he provide that transitional anchor until the youth is ready to take over. I expect his contract to be be AAV of $6-6.5M.

  • TheRealPB

    This was a really tempered and balanced article. If we really did select a D at #5 who pans out as a solid defender in the league that is pretty well done. Ohlund was the third or fourth highest scoring D on his SEL team in his D+2 and that doesn’t seem to have stunted his growth. It’s way too early as many have said to be writing off a Juolevi — we still haven’t seen some of the really good players emerge (like a Dante Fabbro for example). And Dubois today looks a whole lot better than a year ago. The two who I’d be most worried about in that top 10 are Pulujarvi and Nylander, both of whom have looked lost at the NHL and AHL levels. Juolevi has been uneven but as this article I think clearly demonstrates part of that is the challenge of learning how to play D in the pros. He can still turn it on and overwhelm junior foes (like in the last game in the WJC Finland played) but struggles at times with bigger (but not necessarily faster) players. His stick work and gap control and angles are all superior for a teenage defenseman in a men’s league.

    Also it is really cute to see an Oilers troll continue to populate this site talking about anything but especially defensive prospects…

    • North Van Halen

      That’s funny. Checked Ohlund’s stats from the SEL b4 he signed with Van. 16pts in 34gms in his draft year followed by 14 in 34 and 16 in 47, OH MY GOD he regressed he’s gonna be a bust!!!!!

  • Bud Poile

    Salo said Juolevi reminds him of Kimmo Timonen, a Finnish legend who played 16 years in the NHL.

    “With the way he skates and sees the ice, I do see a little Timonen in him,” Salo said. “He’s in control in every situation, even if he’s under pressure. He’s just calm with the puck.

    “He can compete with professionals. It wasn’t easy this year from the start. There was a lot of things he had to get used to.

    “Once he focused on taking charge, it became a lot easier for him. He can make really good plays under pressure. He can make plays a lot of defencemen can’t make.”
    May 18,2018
    Botchford/Province

    • argoleas

      Exactly this. When Salo provides that kind of lofty praise, he HAS to bust Juolevi’s balls to ensure he understands (to his very bones) it will take relentless work to make it happen.

    • TD

      Made me look up Timmonen. Consistent d man who averaged .5 points a game over 17 years. Over good and bad team, as a rookie to an old d man, he averaged 40 points over 80 games. I would love that guy.

  • Kootenaydude

    To be fair during his second year at London he was given a 16 year old defensive partner. He also played on the second line to help spread out the talent. That 16 year old interesting enough was Evan Bouchard. Might just be our first pick of 2018.