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Canucks Prospect Review: Joni Jurmo had a career year but has yet to earn a shot in North America

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Photo credit:@Ilveshockey on IG
Faber
By Faber
8 months ago
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Believe it or not, the Canucks’ top pick from the 2020 draft was Finnish defenceman Joni Jurmo.
Jurmo was selected in the third round (82nd overall) of the 2020 draft after the Canucks trade away their first and second-round picks for the 2020 draft.
There was a lot to like in Jurmo’s game at the time that he was selected. He’s still just 21 years old, is 6’4″ and skates extremely well. There are worries about his hockey IQ and how he thinks the game but the raw talent is absolutely there and he showcased that talent at the 2022 World Junior Championships (the summer one back in August of 2022).
We were impressed a lot by Jurmo at the summer WJC. He was able to skate his way out of trouble, play physically, and was a breakout machine for Finland. He took his WJC success into his Liiga season, where he played in his second full season in Liiga. Jurmo scored five goals and added eight assists with Jukurit and did it all while playing mostly bottom-pairing minutes and not seeing much time on either special teams’ units.
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Decision-making was the thing we keyed in on this past season during our watches of Jurmo. He looked much more confident with the puck and though he still makes mental mistakes, he looked like he took a huge jump in terms of moving the puck out of his own zone and his offence flourished as he more than doubled his goal production and was also strong in the Champions League play — he scored two goals and added two assists in seven CHL games this past year.
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This next pair of clips showcases the best skill in Jurmo’s game. He is able to skate his way into open ice and this season was able to put together his skating along with being able to make passes under pressure. We saw a lot of either or last year but this season, he seemed to put his skating and playmaking together a lot more consistently.
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Jurmo will not be coming to the AHL to begin the season but you can bet that he signs his entry-level contract with the Canucks at the conclusion of his Liiga season and that he potentially joins the AHL club for the final bit of the regular season as well as the playoffs.
Sources have said that Jurmo is very interested in coming over to North America as soon as possible and will be happy to play in the AHL. If he is able to build off of his success this past year, Jurmo should be a nice little boost to the AHL defence corps when he makes his jump to North America.
There’s been movement in Finland on where Jurmo will play next season. After a pair of seasons with Jukurit, Jurmo is moving on to Ilves in Liiga and will embark on what we expect to be his final season in Liiga before coming to North America.

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Jurmo won’t turn 22 years old until next April, so, there’s a lot of time for him to develop his game. The Canucks will be able to get him on his ELC for their control of his development in North America and should be able to work him into the AHL lineup for the 2024-25 season. As for next season, we hope to see Jurmo consistently playing top-four minutes for Ilves and he should work his way up the depth chart for some power play minutes during the 2023-24 Liiga season.
After his Liiga regular season concludes in early March and depending on his team’s playoff run, we could see Jurmo playing in Liiga until late April.
If Jurmo grows his game in Liiga this season, we will be looking at a great burst to the Canucks defence pipeline in Abbotsford.
Predictions for 2023-24 season
51 games played, 11 goals, 21 assists in Liiga.
Two regular-season AHL games, and a full playoff run with the Abbotsford Canucks.

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