Florida Panthers prospects take Silver, Bronze at World Juniors
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The Panthers were well represented in the World Juniors’ medal round, with three out of the four nations remaining featuring a Florida prospect.
In the end, it was Ludvig Jansson and Sweden taking the bronze medal and Kasper Puutio and Finland taking silver.
Finland dropped the gold medal game in a 3-2 overtime thriller to Canada.
Puutio helped generate a 3-on-1 for Finland in the offensive zone that ended with a huge stick save by Ducks prospect Mason McTavish.
Canada forced a 2-on-1 rush the other way and Blue Jackets prospect Kent Johnson made Finland pay after cashing in on a rebound of his own breakaway shot after a big save by Finnish goalie Juha Jatkola.
Puutio did not register a point in the gold medal game.
He finished the tournament with four goals and three assists in seven games.
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That included the lone goal of Finland’s 1-0 victory over Sweden in the semifinal game.
He knocked down a bouncing feed from Islanders prospect Aatu Raty, used his speed to streak in on a breakaway and beat Wild prospect Jesper Wallstedt five-hole to take the lead.
Following the semifinal game, Puutio was named one of Finland’s three best players of the tournament. He also finished the tournament third in points and tied for first in goals among defensemen.
Jansson faced off against 2021 sixth-round pick Jakub Kos in the bronze medal game earlier in the afternoon.
The 2022 fifth-round pick did not play in the bronze medal game — as he mainly served as a depth defenseman for Sweden — but his native country sent Czechia home with a 3-1 victory.
Kos played 15:38 in the bronze medal game, registering zero points, a shot and a plus/minus of minus-1.
Jansson finished the tournament without a point in four games with a plus/minus of minus-2.
Kos had an assist in seven games with a plus/minus of minus-1 in seven games for Czechia.
#FlaPanthers prospect Kasper Puutio broke a scoreless tie in the #WorldJuniors semifinal with this power play goal. pic.twitter.com/NguTPBaR5I
— Colby Guy (@ColbyDGuy) August 20, 2022
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Realistically how far away is he? Do we see him get a taste of north American hockey next year?
I don’t think this year — could be wrong — but next year