Starting next week, a few of the Islanders’ European prospects will step away from their pro teams and suit up for their home countries to take part in the Karjala Cup tournament.
Rosters were announced at various points this week, and the Islanders involved are:
- Sweden: Linus Soderstrom (4-3-1, 2 shutouts with HV71) is one of three goalies going, along with former NHLers Jhonas Enroth and Magnus Hellberg.
- Russia: The defending champs will have Ilya Sorokin (11-4-2, 4 shutouts with CSKA Moscow) among their goalies.
- Finland: Two prospects to keep an eye on are defenseman Robin Salo (3A in 14 games with Sport) and large man-child forward Otto Koivula (2g-9a in 19 games for Lynx).
Salo, by the way, will be featured in The Hockey News’ November issue, which ranks teams’ prospect pools. The Islanders get a “C” overall, but Salo is compared to Arizona’s Niklas Hjalmarsson and describes himself as, “I defend well with my stick and play hard in the defensive zone. I keep a clean slate.” Thanks to friend of the blog, Patrik for the heads-up on that and Sweden’s Karjala Cup roster.
Now, uh, what the hell is the Karjala Cup? It’s a four-day round-robin tournament between the Czech Republic, Russia, Sweden, Finland and Switzerland, with games played in those final three countries this time around. Russia went 3-0 to win last year’s event, and Sweden took the two previous ones.
The tournament runs from November 8th through the 12th. You can follow the scores here. Not sure if it’ll be streamed anywhere but if it is, we’ll let you know.
Good luck to all of the Islanders prospects in the games. AND FOR GOD’S SAKE DON’T GET HURT.