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Fantasy Summary

Very good skater and dangerous offensive forward with top-six upside.


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September 2023 – Training camp is about to begin, and this will be an important one for Jesse Ylonen. The incredibly harsh internal competition of the Canadiens mean he’ll have to fight for a roster spot, but his dynamism and speed make him a very likely bet for opening night. Not all that effective defensively in his NHL sample thus far, it would be interesting to see him on a forechecking line, potentially with Juraj Slafkovsky on his other wing. If he were to hit the waiver wire, he could be a strong add for a team who values speed. We will find out this year whether the Canadiens see him as a genuine piece of their future, or if he is just a warm body filling the spot that will be taken by a younger player in a few years. Aaron Itovitch

June 2023 – We are hitting a turning point in Jesse Ylonen’s career. He will turn 24 early into this upcoming campaign, and it is essentially now-or-never for him to become an impactful NHLer. His skating is at the forefront of the Canadiens organization, with fantastic footspeed and agility, but unless he can draw his whole game together, he may never make the jump. He’ll still be a great piece in Laval if he doesn’t make it on opening night, but his lustre as a prospect is fading. Aaron Itovitch

March 2023 – Ylonen is only two games away from ‘officially’ having a rookie season in the NHL, with 23 games played. Ylonen has proven all supporters right, as he has cemented himself into a role as a two-way middle-six winger. His skating shines above every other player in the Canadiens system, and he is getting even more comfortable in transition at the NHL level. On a rebuilding Canadiens team, Ylonen is receiving a lot of opportunities. The only question is if he will be able to keep this momentum, and retain his spot in the NHL as the team around him improves. Aaron Itovitch

January 2023 – After getting called up to the NHL at the beginning of January, Ylonen is making it very clear that he has no intention of going back to the AHL. He has slotted in as high as being the first-line right-wing alongside Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield, and his role is only bound to grow with injuries to Caufield and Juraj Slafkovsky. He’s quick, smart, and his shot is a genuine threat. He could very well be a future bonafide top-sixer on a competitive team, with a comfortable floor as a responsible bottom-six winger. No matter how he develops, it is clear – Jesse Ylonen is an NHL-calibre forward. Aaron Itovitch

April 2022 – Ylonen’s development has continued its upward curve this year. After a tough final season with Lahti Pelicans in the Liiga, in which he scored just five goals and seven points in 21 games, many Habs fans may have cooled on his upside but that is long forgotten now. He improved upon the 0.59 points per game output he set in the AHL last season with a 0.67 points per game pace this season in a larger sample. Ylonen has true middle-six upside due to his dynamic combination of speed, skating prowess, skill, anticipation, and shooting ability. His one-timer is a legitimate option on the powerplay, especially from the top of the left circle. He has also continued to develop his playmaking game, finding and creating passing lanes in the offensive zone with increasing regularity. What makes him even more well-rounded is his defensive awareness; Ylonen can be used in all situations and play up and down the lineup, a valuable player for any team and especially important for the Canadiens in the wake of the Artturi Lehkonen trade. As a result of his strong season, he was rewarded with 14 NHL games this season. His two goals and five points in that span while playing fourth-line minutes are already respectable, but it is his all-around play that stood out. Ylonen never once looked out of place against NHL competition and his strengths all translated to the next level. According to Natural Stat Trick, his 49.28 xGF% ranks sixth among Habs to have played at least 100 5v5 minutes this season. Ylonen should make the Canadiens’ team out of training camp barring any major setbacks or injury and will be part of this new era of the Habs: young, fast, skilled, and smart. The fantasy upside with this player is significant, there is a distinct possibility that he develops into a second-line winger with 25-goal and 50-point upside, his value will be even higher in leagues that value powerplay production. Sebastian High


July 2021 – Ylonen had a slow start to the season in the Finnish Men’s league, Liiga, but then came over to North America and really impressed. He went from seven points in 21 games in Finland to 17 points in 29 AHL, which was good enough to earn himself a call-up. He only got play in one game for the Canadiens but in that game, he attempted four shots. Ylonen’s speed and offensive instincts make him a dark horse candidate to make some noise at the Canadiens training camp in September. Pablo Ruiz


March 2020 – Ylönen finished his season with 22 points in 53 games for the Pelicans in Liiga. He is now on his way over to help the Laval Rockets make a playoff push. His elite-level acceleration and skating should be an added boost to the Rockets transition game as well as to their rush opportunities. It will be interesting to see how Ylönen adjusts to the North American smaller ice and rougher game. He will likely be given a chance to play with higher-quality teammates in Laval than he did for the Pelicans, which should make his life easier in terms of generating scoring chances. Pablo Ruiz


June 2019 – As many expected it appeared to be a seamless transition from Mestis to Liiga for Ylönen. It took roughly 15 games for the Finn to pick up his stride leading into the IIHF World Junior Championship according to the player, which earned him more ice time; especially on the power-play. He states at that point, “everything got easier.” His six points in seven games at the World Juniors helped lead Finland to its gold medal. For him to have an impactful future in the NHL he will need to add muscle and continue to gain confidence offensively. This coming year Ylönen will have more responsibilities and better deployment which should translate into a positive trajectory regarding his development. Jesse Sherman


June 2018 – Ylönen was drafted 35th overall by the Montreal Canadiens. Ylönen is a great skater with very good goal-scoring ability but he can also make plays. He spent the past season playing at the second-highest level in Finland but will move up to the top level in Liiga for next season. He’s expected to play a big role for Team Finland at the upcoming World Junior Championship tournament. Ylönen was one of the older players in this draft class but still needs a couple of years to reach the NHL. He’s the son of former NHL player Juha.  Jokke Nevalainen

Fantasy Upside 5.5
NHL Certainty 7.5
Country FIN
Position RW
Roster Type NHL
Shoot/Glove Right
Date of Birth October 3, 1999
Height 6‘0”
Weight 168 lbs
Drafted 2018 Round 2; Overall: 35


 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2011-2012 Finland Selects U13QC Int PW3 2 13 2|        
 2013-2014 Kiekko-Espoo U16 ChU16 SM-sarja Q13 9 1322 2|        
  Kiekko-Espoo U16 ChU16 SM-sarja32 15 2136 6|        
 2014-2015 Kiekko-Espoo U16U16 SM-sarja Q10 14 1529 4|        
  Kiekko-Espoo U16U16 SM-sarja23 22 2850 10|        
  Kiekko-Espoo U18U18 SM-sarja2 0 00 0|        
  Jokerit U18U18 SM-sarja6 1 23 0|Playoffs10 0 22
  Finland U16 (all)International-Jr7 0 11 2|        
 2015-2016 Jokerit U18U18 SM-sarja27 11 2233 10|        
  Jokerit U20U20 SM-sarja1 0 00 0|        
  Finland U17 (all)International-Jr6 0 33 0|        
 2016-2017 Kiekko-Espoo U18U18 SM-sarja0 0 00 0|Playoffs4 3 47
  Kiekko-Espoo U20U20 SM-sarja37 15 1631 14|Playoffs4 0 00
  Espoo UnitedMestis3 0 00 2|Playoffs3 0 00
  Finland U18WJC-187 4 59 0|        
  Finland U18 (all)International-Jr17 7 1421 2|        
 2017-2018 Espoo UnitedSuomen Cup3 2 13 0|        
  Kiekko-Espoo U20U20 SM-sarja0 0 00 0|Playoffs4 3 03
  Espoo UnitedMestis48 14 1327 20|        
  Finland U20 (all)International-Jr10 3 58 4|        
 2018-2019 PelicansLiiga53 13 1427 8|Playoffs3 0 11
  Finland U20WJC-207 3 36 0|        
  Finland U20 (all)International-Jr12 4 913 25|        
 2019-2020 PelicansLiiga53 12 1022 14|        
  PelicansChampions HL5 2 13 0|        
 2020-2021 PelicansLiiga21 5 27 8|        
  Montréal CanadiensNHL1 0 00 0|        
  Laval RocketAHL29 9 817 6|        
 2021-2022 Montréal CanadiensNHL14 2 35 2|        
  Laval RocketAHL52 14 2236 12|Playoffs14 3 36
 2022-2023 Montréal CanadiensNHL37 6 1016 0|        
  Laval RocketAHL39 11 2132 16|Playoffs2 0 00
 2023-2024 Montréal CanadiensNHL59 4 48 12|