Jonathan Lekkerimäki wins SHL Rookie of the Year, cut from Team Sweden, and reassigned to Abbotsford Canucks

Photo credit:X/@abbycanucks
Dave Hall
1 month ago
It’s been quite the eventful Wednesday for Vancouver Canucks prospect Jonathan Lekkerimäki.
It began with receiving yet another award to place on the shelf, taking home the SHL “Rookie of the Year.”
This recognition comes as no surprise, considering his dominant performance in the U20 circuit, where he notched an impressive 19 goals and 31 points, outpacing the nearest rookie, Noah Östlund, by a significant eight-point margin.
As part of the award, Lekkerimäki also receives $50,000 to donate to a charity of his choice. Lekkerimäki opted to put the funds toward his hometown hockey club, Flemingsbergs IK.
Shortly after the award was announced, it was time for the big roster reveal.
After nearly a month of training with Team Sweden, including suiting up in six exhibition matches, the team officially announced their 2024 World Championship roster.
Unfortunately, Jonathan Lekkerimäki did not make the cut.
Despite a promising start to his chances, the addition of NHL-caliber players throughout the camp led to a crowded top-nine roster by the final decisions.
By now, we know this kid’s calling card, and it’s meant to be in a top-nine — preferably top-six — scoring role and with a stacked forward group, Lekkerimäki fell just outside of the cut.
This would have been Lekkerimäki’s first appearance at the coveted tournament, and it would have been the perfect bow to add to an already memorable breakout campaign.
Here is the full list of players who will be representing Sweden this year:
However, it’s not all bad news for Canucks fans.
The club promptly reassigned the young sharpshooter back to the Abbotsford Canucks this morning.
Abbotsford is currently down 2-0 in their best-of-five series against the Ontario Reign. With their backs against the wall and facing elimination, Lekkerimäki will be a game-time decision for their home game on Wednesday evening.
With only one goal collectively in two games, the Canucks are undoubtedly eager to have his offensive firepower back in the lineup. If he does get the go-ahead for game three, he’ll bring with him a two-game point streak, extending back to when he last played for the team on April 6th and 7th.

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