Chicago Blackhawks top prospect Henri Jokiharju scored for Finland in his World Junior Championships debut Tuesday. The defenseman fired a shot on the power play against Canada that slipped through the defense to trim the deficit to a single goal.
Jokiharju's shot get's deflected by a defenceman and goes past Hart. 3-2. pic.twitter.com/SSXfYXAlwe— Flintor (@TheFlintor) December 26, 2017
Jokiharju, the No. 29 overall pick in the 2017 NHL Draft by the Blackhawks, has been off to a stellar start this season. He recorded 37 points in 31 games for the WHL’s Portland Winterhawks before leaving to join the Finnish junior national team, which is a prime contender to win the gold medal in Buffalo.
Of the Blackhawks’ five prospects in the World Juniors, Jokiharju clearly stands out as the best of the group. He’s probably the team’s top prospect outside of the NHL right now, depending on how you feel about Dylan Sikura.
Finland has an impressive defense, led by top-10 picks Miro Heiskanen and Olli Juolevi, but Jokiharju hasn’t had any trouble fitting in. He’s a dangerous point man on the power play, as we’ve seen, and could be pushing for a spot in Chicago a year from now if everything goes according to plan. It’s exciting to see.