Five of the Most Notable Finnish Players in CBJ History

Jan 30, 2022; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Joonas Korpisalo (70) during the second period at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 30, 2022; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Joonas Korpisalo (70) during the second period at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports /
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…he’ll probably be remembered best as one of the league’s premier shootout specialists.

Jussi Jokinen played with four teams during the 2017-18 season: including the Blue Jackets. While he played in 14 mostly forgettable games here, scoring just one assist, he had a long NHL career; with 951 games played over 13 seasons.

He had a solid career as a middle-six scoring winger, scoring 191 goals and 563 points in the NHL. But he’ll probably be remembered best as one of the league’s premier shootout specialists. He skated for 9 different franchises in the NHL, and was almost always one of the first players to get a chance in the shootout wherever he landed.

Feb 14, 2018; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Columbus Blue Jackets left wing Jussi Jokinen (36) during their game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. The Maple Leafs beat the Blue Jackets 6-3. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 14, 2018; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Columbus Blue Jackets left wing Jussi Jokinen (36) during their game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. The Maple Leafs beat the Blue Jackets 6-3. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports /

A lot of people consider the shootout a gimmick, so it’s hard to dig up full statistics for them over the years, but a quick glance here shows that Jussi scored on 38.5% of his attempts over his entire career.

His best season in the NHL was with Carolina during the 2009-10 season. He posted 30 goals and 65 points in 81 games for the Canes, finishing second on their team in scoring. He reached 60 points just one other time in his career (2015-16, FLA), but was consistently reliable for 40-50 points in any given season.

Jan 18, 2018; Columbus, OH, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets left wing Jussi Jokinen (36) takes a wrist shot against the Dallas Stars during the second period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 18, 2018; Columbus, OH, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets left wing Jussi Jokinen (36) takes a wrist shot against the Dallas Stars during the second period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports /

His time with the Blue Jackets was cut short – claimed off of waivers in January of 2018, he spent just over a month with the club before being dealt on February 26th, along with Tyler Motte to the Vancouver Canucks, in exchange for forward Tomas Vanek. But like Koivu, he’s a notable long-time NHLer who simply had to be included on this list.