Times have been tough for the Finns since they won gold back in 2016. The country became the first nation in tournament history to go from the top of the podium down to the relegation series in one year, and 2018 wasn’t much better: Finland crumbled against the underdog Czechs in the quarterfinal. For some critics, the Finns are playing too much like the teams of yesteryear, trying to grind things out, even though the squad now has more talent.
Headlining the forwards is returnee Eeli Tolvanen (Nashville), who will want to make amends for last year’s subpar performances. The Finns didn’t fare very well at the World Junior Summer Showcase, but offense from Aarne Talvitie (New Jersey) and Rasmus Kupari (Los Angeles) was encouraging. Meanwhile, undrafted Linus Nyman looked excellent at Novem...
About the Author
Ryan Kennedy is the associate senior writer and draft/prospect expert at The Hockey News. He has been with the publication since 2005 and in that span, Don Cherry, Lil Jon and The Rock have all called his house. He lives in Toronto with his wife and kids where he listens to loud music and collects NCAA pennants.