Canucks prospects: Lekkerimaki 'extra explosive, sooner and larger'

In an unique interview, Jonathan Lekkerimaki says his sport has hit one other stage this season. His coach agrees

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Jonathan Lekkerimaki can’t level to at least one a part of his sport that’s higher since final season.

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That’s as a result of, to the proficient 19-year-old, his sport has by no means been higher.

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“All the pieces,” he says with out hesitation. “Being extra explosive. Quicker and larger. All the pieces.”

The boldness in his voice can’t be understated. The final time he was on the road, the Vancouver Canucks’ 2022 first-rounder was using the bus within the Swedish juniors, despatched down for a stint from the second-tier Allsvenskan to regain his mojo after a bout of mono and accidents threatened to derail his post-draft marketing campaign.

This time, he’s using excessive in his new Orebro digs, having scored within the first three video games of the SHL season for his new first-place crew — tying a file for junior-aged gamers — and understanding the way to bounce again ought to adversity strike once more.

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“I believe I realized from it. Generally it goes up and down,” Lekkerimaki stated on Wednesday night time, winding it down earlier than Thursday’s tilt towards Malmo.

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The child they name ‘Lekki’ seemed each bit the higher participant on Thursday towards Malmo in a 3-2 shootout loss. Skating on the second line, the 5-foot-11, 172-pound right-shot winger was electrical within the early going, establishing linemate Robert Leino for a harmful shot that went off the publish halfway by means of the primary interval, then stickhandling previous a defender in conjunction with the online earlier than slipping the puck in entrance for an excellent probability.

His line was the most effective of the night time, with Leino later scoring and Lekkerimaki dangling the Malmo goalie and slipping the puck below his pads to transform throughout the shootout.

First-year Orebro head coach Johan Hedberg — a former NHL goaltender who performed with the Canucks throughout the 2003-04 season — went with Lekkerimaki once more in a do-or-die shootout state of affairs, however the Huddinge product was stopped on a fast forehand transfer by goaltender Daniel Marmenlind.

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Hedberg joined CHEK TV’s Donnie and Dhali present on Monday, telling the hosts that Lekkerimaki’s sport has progressed a lot additional than anticipated.

“He’s been nice. What all people talks about with Jonathan is his shot, however his playmaking abilities are elite too,” Hedberg stated. “He’s far more structured than I assumed he can be. He’s truly fairly sound defensively and is taking good duty on the market.”

Hedberg stated Lekkerimaki has “big-time” NHL potential however must proceed to get stronger, regardless of having “placed on some muscle groups” over the summer time.

“That’s the principle factor for him. In any other case his expertise set is nice sufficient to be the highest participant within the (SHL), finally.”

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Nonetheless, regardless of three targets in 5 video games and far more concerned play throughout the board, Lekkerimaki has his detractors, who proceed to label him a fringe participant.

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That’s high quality with Lekkerimaki, who stopped taking note of his critics a very long time in the past.

“Simply shut it out. Simply be myself. Play my greatest.”


jurmo
Vancouver Canucks’ Joni Jurmo in motion throughout growth camp on the Doug Mitchel Thunderbird Stadium in Vancouver B.C. on July 4, 2023. Photograph by NICK PROCAYLO /PNG

Elsewhere: Defensive prospect Joni Jurmo (2020, Rd. 3) continues to play second-pairing minutes for Ilves of the Finnish Liiga and notched his first help of the season final week in a 4-2 win over Lukko. Jurmo, 21, used his wheels to steer a rush up the ice and made a wise cross below the stick of a reaching defender for the first helper.

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The 6-foot-5, 209-pound left-shot D-man is averaging round quarter-hour a sport this season and has one level and a plus-1 score in eight video games.

With the Canucks signing quite a lot of younger defencemen this previous low season, Jurmo seems to be in a make-or-break marketing campaign to earn his first NHL contract.

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