It took a bit of time to cross the Ts and dot the Is, but now the paperwork has been filed: 2016 Calgary Flames draft pick Eetu Tuulola is going to be playing in North America for the 2016-17 season.
The Finnish winger was drafted by the Flames in the sixth round (156th overall) of June’s NHL Draft and chosen in the first round (40th overall) by the Western Hockey League’s Everett Silvertips in the Canadian Hockey League Import Draft a week later. Word leaked out of Finland in mid-July that Tuulola had gotten out of his Finnish contract and was headed over to the WHL.
Have confirmed with the club that Eetu Tuulola has agreed to a contract with Everett. Barring anything unforeseen, he’ll be a Silvertip.
— Ryan Pike (@RyanNPike) July 12, 2016
Apparently nothing unforeseen happened, as the Silvertips announced his signing today.
Blessed with a nice combination of size, speed and athleticism, Tuulola made his professional debut last season with HPK (playing 10 games in SM-Liiga) and won a gold medal at the IIHF World Under-18 Championship with Team Finland. He’ll be joining an Everett club that was the lowest-scoring WHL team to make the playoffs last year (by a 40-goal margin), relying on the superb goaltending of Carter Hart to hold them in games.
If he can play in the WHL the same way he did in Flames development camp – he scored a sick hat-trick in the scrimmage – he’ll be given every opportunity to succeed and light the lamp by Everett’s coaching staff.