“His ability to process the game and make the right play is impressive. Our plan for him is London.”
Though many expected Juolevi to head back to London after an exceptional rookie season with the club in which he scored 42 points and was a big part of their Memorial Cup victory, it’s a bit surprising to have the team say it this early in the summer.
Juolevi still hasn’t signed his entry-level contract, and perhaps this is why, since the team clearly doesn’t think there is even a possibility of him cracking the NHL roster out of camp. Instead, he’ll go back to London and look to continue his impressive development on the North American ice. The Finnish defender still has work to do in his own end to become the top-pairing player that the Canucks envisioned when they took him as the first defenseman in this year’s draft.
Though it’s still at least a year away, Canuck fans should be counting the days until Juolevi makes his debut on the back end for the big club, as his 6’3″ frame and excellent skating ability will translate beautifully to a league that is going more and more towards possession and transitional play from it’s defenders.