The last few rosters for the upcoming 2023 World Junior Championship tournament are being announced, and a second Calgary Flames prospect has been named to his country’s squad. Forward Topi Rönni has been named to Finland’s final roster for the event.
Rönni was the Flames’ second-round selection, 59th overall, in the 2022 NHL Draft. A savvy 200-foot centre who can play in any game situation, he’s previously represented Finland at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup and the Under-18 Worlds. He impressed at Finland’s summer camp and has been included in most mock-ups of Finland’s roster because, quite simply, he’s really good relative to his age group within his home country. He likely projects as a middle-six centre for the national junior team at this tournament.
Rönni’s 2022-23 hasn’t been without challenges, though. He suffered an injury in that summer camp that kept him out of action until mid-September, at which point he played one game and then missed about a month with a lingering illness. He’s played two games with Tappara’s junior team and put up five points, and he’s become a fixture in Tappara’s Liiga club on their third and fourth lines, with two points in 10 games. He’s young and raw and so they’re bringing him along slowly, but he’s showing a good deal of promise and utility at a young age in a tough league.
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The World Juniors run Dec. 26-Jan. 5 in Halifax and Moncton.