WHO IS HE?
The Hurricanes’ second-round pick in 2017, Luostarinen played three seasons in the top division of his native Finland before spending all of last season in North America with Charlotte, Carolina and Springfield. He has represented Finland internationally several times, including a gold medal win at the 2019 World Championship.
WHAT KIND OF PLAYER IS HE?An all-around center with size (6-foot-3, 194 pounds), Luostarinen contributes at both ends of the ice and in all situations.
WHAT HAPPENED LAST SEASON?Luostarinen was a reliable top-six center for the Checkers last season, scoring 25 points (8g, 17a) in 44 games. He also played his first eight NHL games with Carolina, recording one assist, before the Hurricanes traded him to Florida. He only had time to play in five games for the Panthers’ previous AHL affiliate in Springfield before the season ended prematurely in March, but he later accompanied the NHL club to the Toronto bubble for the Stanley Cup Playoffs as a reserve.
WHAT DOES COACH GEORDIE KINNEAR SAY?“He’s a two-way player with great skill that can make plays in traffic and around the net. He’s a very, very smart hockey player with a hockey IQ that is elite. I’m looking forward to getting to know him a little bit better as we move forward, but he’s got a lot of talent. Getting traded in your first year is not always easy, but when you go through those things they become life experiences and you get better from that.”
WHAT'S HE DOING NOW?Back with his previous Finnish club KalPa, where he had been since the youth level prior to last season, Luostarinen is enjoying a strong start to the 2020-21 campaign. He ranks second on the team with 15 points (5g, 10a) in 17 games.
WHAT’S A FUN FACT ABOUT HIM?He could potentially be one of five Finnish forwards on next season’s Checkers team. Aleksi Heponiemi and Juho Lammikko are already under two-way contracts, while Henrik Borgstrom and Aleski Saarela are still restricted free agents.
CAN I SEE SOME HIGHLIGHTS?Sure.
DID I MISS ANY OTHER PROFILES?Maybe.
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