The expected news of Jesse Ylönen’s travels came this week, as the team he has been on loan to, the Lahti Pelicans, tweeted out that he was North America bound.
Laaksonen ja Ylönen kutsuttiin Pohjois-Amerikkaan.— Lahden Pelicans (@PelicansFi) January 7, 2021
Kiitos ja tsemppiä herrat rapakon taakse.
Toivottavasti näemme teidät vielä joskus turkoosissa peliasussa. #Pelicansfi #Liiga pic.twitter.com/zsZT2VtV4F
While Ylönen’s time in Liiga hasn’t been that productive, ha has been secure defensively. He still finished his stint with the team ranking 10th in scoring as the Pelicans had relied upon Ryan Lasch as a scoring winger on the line above Ylönen’s.
After a first season in Liiga, a season in which the Pelicans finished third in the standings, Ylönen’s production fell as the team plummeted to the bottom of the table. While his production fell, his relative impact on the team actually increased, something I discussed in an article earlier.
He started this season on the second line, but when the Pelicans got a chance to add Lasch, the Champions Hockey League MVP from 2020, Ylönen was moved down in the lineup.
His points were split evenly between five-on-five and the power play, with three points (2G, 1A) coming with a man advantage.
Ylönen was signed late last spring in order to play with the Laval Rocket in the AHL, however an injury left him off the ice, and then the season was cancelled just as his recovery concluded. However, the time spent in Montreal and Laval left a good impression, as Ylönen told me that he was looking forward to the AHL:
Just texted a bit with Jesse Ylönen, "I am very excited to join Laval, and train and play under Joël Bouchard."— Patrik Bexell (@Zeb_Habs) January 8, 2021
He was ready to join the AHL two years ago, when I met him in Finland. He is finally on the next step of his hockey career. #GoRocket #Habs
What I would want to see from him in the AHL is him going more toward the net after his successful zone entires. In Finland he usually stayed on the wing to look for a pass, or took a shot to force a faceoff in the attacking zone.
Ylönen’s last comment in the text conversation with me was a thank you to the fans who have been rooting for him. “I have really appreciated the support [from the Montreal fans]!”