Buffalo Sabres Sign Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen

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The Buffalo Sabres announced today that the team has signed goaltender Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen to a three-year, entry-level contract.

Sabres Sign Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen was drafted in the second round, 54th overall by the Sabres in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. The 19-year-old native of Espoo, Finland is a rather large netminder standing at 6-foot-4 and weighing in at 198 pounds. This past season he played for Leki Lempaala in Finland’s second division. He posted a record of 11-11-2 with a GAA of 2.92 and a save percentage of .909. Luukkonen also played one game for HPK Hameenlinna in the top Finnish league SM-Liiga.

Luukkonen represented Finland at the World Junior Championships this year where he posted a record of 2-3 with a 3.13 GAA and a .879 save percentage.

He is a very lengthy goalie with quick reflexes and cuts down his angles well. He is quick moving side to side and also has great puck handling which is key in today’s NHL to help with the transition game. His rebound control could use a bit of work, which is expected from a young goalie.

You can see Ben Kerr’s full scouting report on Luukkonen here.

 

Luukkonen’s Future

Luukkonen looks to be the goaltender for the future for the Buffalo Sabres. He was top-ranked goaltender according to the International Scouting Services and was the second-ranked goalie by Last Word’s own Ben Kerr going into last year’s draft. He ended up being the second goalie drafted last year after the Dallas Stars selected Jake Oettinger in the first round.

Luukkonen will spend next season with HPK in the top Finnish league SM-Liiga where he hopes to develop his game more before coming over to North America for a chance to play with the Sabres.

 

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