The WJC is still fresh in our minds but now it’s time to start focusing on the other world tournament which is actually even more interesting for people who scout draft-eligible players: the 2019 U18 World Championship tournament which is played in northern Sweden in the cities of Örnsköldsvik and Umeå.
The tournament starts on April 18th which is just about three months away, so I figured I’d take an early look at what Team Finland might look like once we get that far of the season. Finland is coming into the tournament as the reigning champions after winning gold last year in Russia. Can they win gold again? As a Finn, I sure hope so. I will also provide draft projections for the prospects in my lineup.
This lineup is done assuming everyone is healthy and available, and obviously a lot can still change before the actual tournament starts. Because it’s the 2019 U18 Worlds, anyone born in 2001 or after that is eligible to participate in the tournament. Most of the players will be born in 2001 but some 2002-born players have a chance to play there as well.
Leevi Aaltonen – Anton Lundell – Kaapo Kakko
Patrik Puistola – Henri Nikkanen – Kasper Simontaival
Marcus Kallionkieli – Antti Saarela – Veeti Miettinen
Aku Räty – Juuso Pärssinen – Tuukka Tieksola
At the ripe old age of 17, both Kaapo Kakko (2019) and Anton Lundell (2020) are already two-time World Champions. They played a big role at the U18 Worlds in Russia a year ago, and they played a big role at the WJC in Vanco